The holds leader among the titles that arrive in the upcoming week is the next in John Sandford’s Virgil Flowers series, Escape Clause, (PRH/Putnam; Penguin Audio/BOT; OverDrive Sample). Close behind in holds is Jojo Moyes’s Paris for One and Other Stories (PRH/Pamela Dorman; Penguin Audio/BOT; OverDrive Sample). It is a People pick for the week: “Moyes in in fine, cheeky form in this collection of short fiction, deploying the wit and charm that animates Me Before You and her other popular novels.”
James Patterson comes up with a new twist on his BookShots series of short original paperbacks next week, collecting four of the titles into a hardcover edition, Kill or Be Killed: Thrillers (Hachette/BookShots Series; OverDrive Sample) also available in large print, the first time any BookShots titles have been available in that format.
More Christmas novels also arrive, with two authors trying their hand at them for the first time: David Rosenfelt’s The Twelve Dogs of Christmas: An Andy Carpenter Mystery (Macmillan/Minotaur; Macmillan Audio; OverDrive Sample) and Beth Harbison’s A Shoe Addict’s Christmas (Macmillan/St. Martin’s; Macmillan Audio; OverDrive Sample).
Jay Asher’s second YA novel, after the very popular Thirteen Reasons Why, is also a Christmas novel, What Light (Penguin Young Readers/Razorbill; Penguin Audio/Listening Library; OverDrive Sample), about a girl whose family owns a Christmas tree farm. Booklist calls it a “surprising change of direction … a frothy, peppermint-in-hot-cocoa romance … Certain to please readers seeking an escapist, feel-good holiday read.” The Netflix adaptation of Thirteen Reasons Why is currently in production. Asher recently spoke to the students in the California high school where filming recently wrapped.
These titles, and those highlighted below, along with other notable titles arriving next week, are listed with ordering information and alternate formats on our downloadable spreadsheet, Earlyword New Title Radar Week of Oct 17.
The hosts of the hit HGTV show Fixer Upper hit the cover of People magazine for their first book. The show returns for its fourth season on Tuesday, November 29th. Another HGTV star, Nicole Curtis, host of Rehab Addict, is also releasing a book this week, Better Than New: Lessons I’ve Learned from Saving Old Homes (and How They Saved Me) (PRH/Artisan; OverDrive Sample).
The fall season has brought many new books by and about musicians, including Bruce Springsteen and the Beach Boys. People‘s “Book of the Week” is about another artist from the same era, Paul Simon. They write, “This touching biography details the singer’s Queens youth, his beginnings with Art Garfunkel and the road to stardom. … Pure pleasure.”
Two titles from the NYT‘s selection of The Best Cookbooks of Fall 2016, arrive this week:
Food52 A New Way to Dinner: A Playbook of Recipes and Strategies for the Week Ahead, Amanda Hesser, Merrill Stubbs (PRH/Ten Speed; OverDrive Sample). It was also reviewed separately in the NYT with the headline “Practical Magic for the Modern Cook.”
The last of the Man Booker finalists to be published in the US, this title was originally published by the tiny 2-person Scottish house Saraband (see our earlier coverage). The novel earned praise from The Guardian, which said “The book’s pretense at veracity, as well as being a literary jeux d’esprit, brings an extraordinary historical period into focus.”
It is another very busy publishing week with twelve new peer picks hitting shelves, including two Library Reads selections from the October list:
“Thrilled for another opportunity to enjoy DI Stephens and Max Mephisto joining forces against crime and intrigue. It may appear light hearted with its theatrical/magician twist, but these detective stories are full of dark happenings. Solving the gruesome murder of two local children dampens the holiday spirit in this small town. The lead characters are very enjoyable and the theater setting so unique. I enjoyed the love interest/overprotected daughter story line as well! Very much looking forward to the next installment.” — Carol Ward, Cuyahoga County Public Library, Solon, OH
“Einstein. Just hearing that name likely brings a smile to your face, as you picture the mischievous wild-haired scientist with the twinkle in his eye. In The Other Einstein, readers get a view of the woman behind the genius, his first wife Mileva Maric, a strong willed and brilliant physics student who refused to let society dictate her life’s path, but who lost her way when love came on the scene. Benedict has penned an engaging tale that will likely inspire readers to investigate the true story behind Maric’s genius and her personal and professional relationship with Einstein.” — Sharon Layburn, South Huntington Public Library, Huntington Station, NY
Additional Buzz: It is also an Indie Next pick for October and Canadian librarians made it a LoanStar October pick. It tops Bustle‘s list of “12 New Novels Every History Buff Needs To Read” and Popsugar included it among their “25 Books You’re Going to Want to Curl Up With This Fall.”
Selections from book sellers span their October and November Indie Next lists. One more from October is Truevine: Two Brothers, a Kidnapping, and a Mother’s Quest: A True Story of the Jim Crow South, Beth Macy (Hachette/Little, Brown and Company; Blackstone Audio; OverDrive Sample).
“In the early 20th century, Albino African American brothers are kidnapped by unscrupulous and racist circus managers who not only steal their earnings from their work as freak show performers, but also tell their mother that they are dead. This occurs during the height of the Jim Crow South, when black lives didn’t matter and lynching was at its peak. The mother’s persistent and heroic fight through legal channels to recoup her sons’ wages and achieve a better standard of living is at the heart of this true story, an inside look at the historical depths of American racism.” —Joan Grenier, Odyssey Bookshop, South Hadley, MA
Additional Buzz: It is a Kirkus Prize Finalist and a Carnegie Medal Longlist selection. Entertainment Weekly picked it as one of their fall reading choices. The author will be part of C-SPAN’s coverage of the 28th annual Southern Festival of Books in Nashville this weekend.
The remaining selections are from the Indie Next November list:
“It’s a familiar cast of characters: a single mom raising a spunky kid; an older woman descending into Alzheimer’s; the inhabitants of a small town; a nice eligible man. And then comes the twist: the single mom and the older woman aren’t related by blood, but connected through the older woman’s now deceased daughter. With humor and heart, long-held secrets come to light and special bonds are formed. Inheriting Edith is both entertaining and poignant.” —Jenny Stroyeck, The Homer Bookstore, Homer, AK
“I came to this book expecting to be entertained, and it is laugh-out-loud funny. But in the wise and observant ways of Prose, Mister Monkey is more than just a protracted joke. The story begins in the narrow spaces of a theater so to be demolished for condos and widens as Prose shifts points of view from actor to costume designer to writer to waiter to Hindu deity and back to the stage. Adolescent rage, loneliness, divinity, the end of the world, the beginning of love, the way we fail to live up to our dreams for ourselves, the fear of our own mediocrity, the unexpected victories that are the grace that fills the spaces made by disappointment: these are the soul of this novel with an agile, monkey heart. Both deeply moving and light, this is one of my favorite novels of the year.” —Melanie McNair, Malaprop’s Bookstore/Café, Asheville, NC
Additional Buzz: It is a Carnegie Medal Longlist selection and made the Fall Reading list of the New York Magazine and WSJ. Bustle picked it as one of the “12 Best New Fiction Out In October To Read On A Cozy Fall Day.”
“IQ is the nickname of Isaiah Quintabe, who, despite being a high-school dropout, is absolutely brilliant and has amazing deductive skills. Living on the rough side of Long Beach, California, he is an underground detective who takes on cases in the city’s ghettoes that the LAPD refuses to handle. Beginning with a kidnapping and moving to a case involving the assassination attempt on a famous rapper, IQ represents a positive influence in this tough environment of gang warfare, drugs, murders, and prostitution. A mixture of Michael Connelly’s The Lincoln Lawyer, the craziness of Don Winslow’s Savages, and the classic mysteries of Sherlock Holmes, this debut will spark interest and open up this particular world to new readers.” —Gerard Villegas, Warwick’s, La Jolla, CA
Additional Buzz: Deadline Hollywood reports that the rights sold in a seven-way bidding war for developed into a drama series. The Washington Post review calls it “One of the most original thrillers of the year.” It is one of Literary Hub‘s “18 Books You Should Read This October,” The Hollywood Reporter picks it as one of “20 Must-Reads” of the season, and Entertainment Weekly counts it among the “8 mysteries and thrillers to chill you this fall.”
“The Gambler vs. the House. Alexander Bruno’s journey as a psychically abled, top-notch backgammon player illuminates themes of reward and loss, purpose and fulfillment in this engaging, thought-provoking yarn. Lethem’s prose is on point, and his allusions and references resonate strongly. His description of this world — fast, oddly comical, sardonic, and, at most times, without sense or reason — is poignant and heavy-hitting, full of breath without being overly winded. Another winner from Lethem, who has established himself firmly amongst the top dogs of intelligent contemporary literary fiction.” —Blake Smith, The Oxford Exchange, Tampa, FL
Additional Buzz: It’s reviewed by Kurt Anderson on the cover of the New York Times Sunday Book Review, as well as a daily review by Dwight Garner (as part of the new direction, with both the daily and Sunday review reporting to Pamela Paul, this is not an accident, but indicates that the book was considered important enough for double coverage). Anderson notes this is Lethem’s tenth novel, making him “among the most prolific of the name-brand literary novelists of his generation,” and that “Lethem has said that after ending his youthful sci-fi phase and becoming a certified big deal, he felt pressure to ‘stay major!’ . . . to only write books as long, sorrowful and wide-screen as The Fortress of Solitude, but that he chose instead to write ‘other kinds of books.’ A Gambler’s Anatomy is the best so far of those other kinds of books.”
Garner, however, goes ahead and compares this new book to the author’s earlier efforts to write The Great American novel, and finds that, in comparison, that this is a “fluky novel, not among Mr. Lethem’s very best. Its themes are underdeveloped, and it moves in zigs and zags, like a squirrel in headlights,” amusingly saying “it plays at its best like a Twilight Zone episode filmed by the Coen brothers.”
The Washington Post‘s Ron Charles gives a rundown of the story (his print review is here).
‘This is a grueling, soul-searching study of memory and personal pain written in the most soaring prose. To some extent, most of us think we came from dysfunctional families, but this memoir is going to become the calibration standard for dysfunction. How Slouka survived his parents and their scarred Czech pasts, their humiliating years as refugees, and their years of unhappy marriage in America is a small miracle. What’s left are some large emotional holes that Slouka attempts to patch up in front of the reader. An absolutely mesmerizing read.” —Darwin Ellis, Books on the Common, Ridgefield, CT
“The Fall Guy, which starts innocently enough, introduces its three main characters as they leave the hustle and bustle of New York City for a calm summer sojourn upstate. Things take a Lynchian turn when Charlie and Chloe’s guest, Charlie’s cousin Matthew, notices what appears to be duplicitous behavior within and outside their home. Lasdun does an incredible job of slowly ratcheting up the suspense, earning the reader’s trust with his spare, pitch-perfect language, and upending expectations on every page. Morally complex characters, a sly and inventive take on the guilt and shame of modern-day banking, and prose as sensuous as some of the novel’s sexiest scenes are just a few of the many rewards of Lasdun’s latest, and greatest, novel.” —John Francisconi, Bank Square Books, Mystic, CT
Additional Buzz: It is on the Fall Reading list made by Entertainment Weekly.
“With only hours left before cancer kills her, Joanna DeAngelis is dying badly. Instead of focusing on saying goodbye to her daughters and her beloved dog, she spends her last day cyber-stalking her ex-boyfriend and his Internet-famous new girlfriend. When Joanna draws her last breath, mysterious heavenly powers decide that she needs to resolve a few things before moving on to the next world. What happens when ghost-Joanna returns to New York City bent on revenge is terrifying, funny, and, finally, break-out-the-tissues touching. A gorgeous book about love in all its forms: familial, canine, romantic, lost and found again.” —Hillary Nelson, Gibson’s Bookstore, Concord, NH
Additional Buzz: Popsugar names it one of “12 Books to Binge On Before the Girl on the Train Movie” and Bustle list is among “21 Novels By Women To Add to Your TBR Pile This Fall.”
“Fans of Gorky Park and other Arkady Renko mysteries are about to be surprised. The Girl From Venice is not a mystery, and it takes place in Venice at the end of WWII, not in countries of the Eastern Bloc during the Cold War. The pace is still taut, however, and the characters still fascinating. Italy in the last days of the war, with the Germans retreating and everyone hedging their bets, is a complicated place to be, one where every future is uncertain and one very fitting for a master of subtlety like Smith.” —Olga Onal, Bookmiser, Roswell, GA
“On May 13, 1939, the S.S. St. Louis set sail from Germany to Cuba with many Jewish passengers fleeing Hitler. Despite all best efforts, they were turned away from Cuba, the U.S., and Canada, forcing the ship to return to Europe, where many of the passengers would die in Hitler’s death camps. Correa puts a human face on this shameful episode. Hannah Rosenthal, the daughter of wealthy aristocrats, was 12 when she boarded the St. Louis. Seven decades later, Anna Rosen receives a package from an unknown relative in Cuba that inspires her and her mother to travel to Cuba to learn the truth about their family’s mysterious and tragic past. A masterful debut!” —Deon Stonehouse, Sunriver Books & Music, Sunriver, OR
Additional Buzz: People gives a nod the author, the editor in chief People en Espanyol, making it a pick of the week, saying it “brings the refugee experience alive in the timely must-read.” Sister publication Entertainment Weekly features an interview with the author.
The Spanish-language edition, La niña alemana will receive attention on Spanish-language TV and, of course, in People en Espanol.
• CNN en Espanol-TV/’Camilo,’ October 17
• Univision-Radio/’Maria Marin,’ October 17
• Telemundo-TV/’Un Nueva Dia,’ October 18
• Univision-TV/’Despierta America,’ October 18
• November issue of People en Espanol
One tie-in this week, The Making of Outlander: The Series: The Official Guide to Seasons One & Two, Tara Bennett (PRH/Delacorte Press; OverDrive Sample). It is a behind-the-scenes account of what it took to create the series as well as a guide to the two seasons aired thus far.
No air date has been set for season three, but Den of Geek offers a run down of what is known about the upcoming show.