Archive for the ‘2009 – Spring’ Category

LA Times: ‘Resilience’ is ‘Short But Surprisingly Deep’

Wednesday, May 13th, 2009

Elizabeth Edwards’s recent appearances on Oprah and the Today Show have made her the author of the moment. But the media speculation about her motives for writing Resilience: Reflections on the Burdens and Gifts of Facing Life’s Adversities has largely obscured the question of whether her memoir is actually a good read.

Now, a book review from the Los Angeles Times says the strength of her memoir about facing the loss of her 16-old son, resurgent cancer and marital betrayal by former Democratic Presidential candidate John Edwards lies in “how little of it actually has to do with John Edwards’ caddish behavior.” Noting that Edwards emerged from her husband’s shadow in the 2004 and 2008 presidential campaigns “on the power of her personality” and her willingness to take her own positions, such as her support of gay marriage, the review calls Resilience “short but surprisingly deep… And when you finish it you have not just a deeper understanding of Elizabeth Edwards but also a better appreciation for the strength of will it can take to survive.”

For those who missed it, here’s a quick recap of the previous coverage. Edwards began her tour with an appearance Oprah, in which she said her feelings for her husband were “complicated,” and later appeared on the Today Show, where Matt Lauer quoted criticism of her book by Maureen Dowd in the New York Times (“it’s just a gratuitous peek into their lives, and one that exposes her kids”) and Sally Quinn in the Washington Post  (who suggests Edwards enabled her husband to cheat).  Tina Brown in The Daily Beast also weighed in; “If she had stuck with her health and her loss, Edwards might have held on to our sympathy. But her insistence on belittling to Oprah the dreaded ‘other woman,’ Rielle Hunter…was so embarrassingly self-righteous it almost made me feel sorry for the Democratic twinkie John.”

The book has been rising on both Amazon (currently at #12) and B&N.com (currently at #12). Libraries show heavy reserving, 15 to 1 in several cases.

Resilience: Reflections on the Burdens and Gifts of Facing Life’s Adversities
Elizabeth Edwards
Price: $22.95
Hardcover: 224 pages
Publisher: Broadway – (2009-05-08)
ISBN-10: 076793136X
ISBN-13: 9780767931366

Also in audio from Random House:

  • ISBN-10: 0307577198
  • ISBN-13: 978-0307577191

Bear Stearns Saga Rises on Amazon

Wednesday, May 13th, 2009

Street Fighters: The Last 72 Hours in the Toughest Firm on Wall St. by Kate Kelly has risen to #37 on Amazon, but none of the major library systems we checked had it in stock (it may have been embargoed, preventing prepub reviews). 

Released May 12, the Wall St. Journal reporter’s book is riding a publicity wave that began with yesterday’s New York Post report on Kelly’s revelation that Bear Stearns rebuffed last minute aid by rival investment bank Goldman Sachs shortly before its collapse last spring. Other major media hits include an interview on NPR’s Fresh Air and a rave Los Angeles Times review, which described Kelly’s look at the firm’s final 72 hours as “brilliantly reported” and “grippingly propulsive,” with well-sketched portraits of Bear’s upper ranks, “where executives were fiercely territorial and oddly inattentive to even critical operational questions. Bear Stearns was, in the end, an institution where denial was the executive suites’ emotion of first resort.”

Librarians may have skimped on Kelly’s book in favor of William D. Cohan’s book about Bear Stearns, House of Cards: A Tale of Hubris and Wretched Excess on Wall Street, which beat Kelly’s book to market by two months and is currently #4 on the New York Times bestseller list. That book, which focuses on the firm’s final 10 days, received a rave review from Michiko Kakutani in the New York TimesNow #117 on Amazon, Cohan’s book is better represented in the libraries we checked, although the ratio of holds to available copies is high – ranging from 117 to 158 holds on 4 – 39 copies. 

 
Street Fighters: The Last 72 Hours of Bear Stearns, the Toughest Firm on Wall Street
Kate Kelly
Price: $25.95
Hardcover: 256 pages
Publisher: Portfolio Hardcover – (2009-05-12)
ISBN-10: 1591842735
ISBN-13: 9781591842736

 

 
House of Cards: A Tale of Hubris and Wretched Excess on Wall Street
William D. Cohan
Price: $27.95
Hardcover: 480 pages
Publisher: Doubleday – (2009-03-10)
ISBN-10: 0385528264
ISBN-13: 9780385528269

House of Cards is available in audio:

  • Publishers: Tantor Media.
  • ISBN: 9781400141685
  • $54.95; unabridged; 20 discs

There is also an e-book version:

  • Overdrive Adobe ePub eBook; $27.95

Masters of Sex

Tuesday, May 12th, 2009

On the Daily BeastDaphne Merkin writes about the cleverly titled Masters of Sex, a biography of Masters and Johnson, the pioneers of sex research, Masters and Johnson, calling it

…a richly informed and elegantly organized account of the two people behind the logo that stood for new sexual horizons.

The review is as fascinating as the book sounds.

Several libraries have not yet ordered it.

Masters of Sex
Thomas Maier
Price: $27.50
Hardcover: 432 pages
Publisher: Basic Books – (2009-04-13)
ISBN-10: 0465003079
ISBN-13: 9780465003075

The Typo Sleuth

Tuesday, May 12th, 2009

Who of us could resist this headline — A Sleuth Goes to the Library?

It’s for the Wall Street Journal‘s review of a book most of us won’t be able to resist, Curiosities of Literature, “a book crammed with enough amusing trivia to fuel your cocktail-party conversation until Bernie Madoff’s memoirs come out.”

Indeed, the review is peppered with fascinating literary tidbits. 

Unfortunately, a full three paragraphs is spent detailing typos and errors in grammar.

Wait! Should my first line have started with “Whom of us…”?

Curiosities of Literature: A Feast for Book Lovers
John Sutherland
Retail Price: $22.95
Hardcover: 288 pages
Publisher: Skyhorse Publishing – (2009-04-22)
ISBN 10:    

ISBN 13:

1602393710     

9781602393714

Fiction Bestsellers Lists, Week of 4/26

Sunday, May 10th, 2009

The following is based on the 5/17 NYT list (sales through 5/2) and the 5/7 USA Today general list (sales through 5/3).

#1 NYT Fiction
#1 USA Today general

The 8th Confession (The Women’s Murder Club)
James Patterson, Maxine Paetro
Price: $27.99
Hardcover: 368 pages
Publisher: Little, Brown and Company – (2009-04-27)
ISBN-10: 0316018767
ISBN-13: 9780316018760

Also available in audio from Books on Tape and  Hachette; as downloadable Adobe EPUB eBook and audio from OverDrive; and large print from Little, Brown.

————————-

#1 NYT Paperback Trade Fiction
#3 USA Today general

This is Nora Roberts’s first trade original and the first in a new series. Upcoming titles are:

  • Bed of Roses (12/09), 
  • Savor the Moment (5/10),
  • Happy Ever After (12/10)
Vision in White (The Wedding Quartet, Book 1)
Nora Roberts
Price: $16.00
Paperback: 352 pages
Publisher: Berkley Trade – (2009-04-28)
ISBN-10: 0425227510
ISBN-13: 9780425227510

Also available in audio from Brilliance; in downloadable eBook and audio from OverDrive.

————————-

#2 NYT Fiction
#10 USA Today general

Breaking onto the hardcover fiction list for the first time, after several years on the paperback lists, is J.R. Ward’s seventh installment of the Black Dagger Brotherhood, a series about vampire warriors. The previous titles in the series are:

  • Dark LoverBook One; September 2005
  • Lover EternalBook Two; March 2006
  • Lover AwakenedBook Three; September 2006
  • Lover RevealedBook Four; March 2007
  • Lover UnboundBook Five ; September 2007
  • Lover EnshrinedBook Six ; June 2008
  • The Black Dagger Brotherhood: An Insider”s GuideOctober 2008

Ward begins another “dark and edgy paranormal romance” series this year Covet: A Novel of the Fallen Angels, (Signet; ISBN-10: 0451228219; ISBN-13: 978-0451228215; $7.99 pbk).

She will also continue the Black Dagger Brotherhood series. 

Lover Avenged (Black Dagger Brotherhood, Book 7)
J.R. Ward
Price: $24.95
Hardcover: 544 pages
Publisher: NAL Hardcover – (2009-04-28)
ISBN-10: 0451225856
ISBN-13: 9780451225856

Also available in audio from Penguin and downloadable ebook and audio from OverDrive.

————————-

#4 NYT Fiction
#19 USA Today general

Summer On Blossom Street
Debbie Macomber
Price: $24.95
Hardcover: 368 pages
Publisher: Mira – (2009-05-01)
ISBN-10: 0778326438
ISBN-13: 9780778326434

Also available in audio from Brilliance; in downloadable eBook and audio from OverDrive.

————————-

#9 NYT Fiction
#121 USA Today general

This marks the first time in the NYT top ten for Laurie R. King’s Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes series. 

The Language of Bees
Laurie R. King
Price: $25.00
Hardcover: 448 pages
Publisher: Bantam – (2009-04-28)
ISBN-10: 0553804545
ISBN-13: 9780553804546

Also available in large print from Throndike and downloadable Adobe EPUB eBook from OverDrive.

————————-

#14 NYT Fiction
#148 USA Today general

Home Safe
Elizabeth Berg
Price: $25.00
Hardcover: 272 pages
Publisher: Random House – (2009-04-28)
ISBN-10: 1400065119
ISBN-13: 9781400065110

Also available in audio from Random House and downloadable Adobe EPUB eBook from OverDrive.

————————-

#19 NYT Fiction, Extended
#120 USA Today general

Mr. and Miss Anonymous
Fern Michaels
Price: $24.00
Hardcover: 336 pages
Publisher: Kensington – (2009-05-01)
ISBN-10: 0758212720
ISBN-13: 9780758212726

Also available in audio from Brilliance; in downloadable eBook and audio from OverDrive.

————————-

#30 NYT Fiction, Extended

Debut novel with significant bookseller backing.

The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie
Alan Bradley
Price: $23.00
Hardcover: 384 pages
Publisher: Delacorte Press – (2009-04-28)
ISBN-10: 0385342306
ISBN-13: 9780385342308

Also available in audio from Random House and downloadable Adobe EPUB eBook and audio from OverDrive.

————————-

#34 NYT Fiction, Extended

Sag Harbor
Colson Whitehead
Price: $24.95
Hardcover: 288 pages
Publisher: Doubleday – (2009-04-28)
ISBN-10: 0385527659
ISBN-13: 9780385527651

Also available in audio from Books on Tape and downloadable Adobe EPUB eBook and audio from OverDrive.

————————-

#35 NYT Fiction, Extended

This crime novel by National Book Award winning author (Tree of Smoke) originally appeared as a serial in Playboy. it’s being reviewed widely, including a very strong review in this week’s NYT Book Review.

Nobody Move
Denis Johnson
Price: $23.00
Hardcover: 208 pages
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux – (2009-04-27)
ISBN-10: 0374222908
ISBN-13: 9780374222901

Also available in audio from BBC Audio and downloadable audio from OverDrive.

‘Healing the Addicted Brain’ at #5 on Amazon

Friday, May 8th, 2009

Healing the Addicted Brain: The Revolutionary, Science-Based Alcoholism and Addiction Recovery Program by physician Harold Urschel sped up Amazon’s bestseller list yesterday after Dr. Phil featured the author on a show about “How to Stay Sober.”

None of the major systems we checked have any copies.

Dr. Phil praised Urschel as “the number one addictionologist expert in this particular area,” for his treatment that combines brain chemistry science with psychiatry and environmental and lifestyle adjustments, with clients from around the world seeking his treatment at the Urschel Recovery Science Institute in Dallas, TX.

According to a press release from publisher Sourcebooks, 

Dr. Urschel starts with leading-edge thinking about brain science and neuronal chemistry, then integrates the latest anti-addiction medications and therapies, combined with unique, individualized psycho-social direction, stress management, coping skills, and even legal guidance, providing a comprehensive science-based program focused on the prevention of relapse.

Healing the Addicted Brain: The Revolutionary, Science-Based Alcoholism and Addiction Recovery Program
Harold Urschel
Price: $15.99
Paperback: 288 pages
Publisher: Sourcebooks Trade – (2009-04-01)
ISBN-10: 1402218443
ISBN-13: 9781402218446

‘T.S. Spivet’ Debut Novel Rising Fast

Wednesday, May 6th, 2009

When a 29 year-old author’s first novel jumps to #112 on Amazon the day after it goes on sale, it’s time to call it “a precocious debut.” The rise of The Selected Works of T.S. Spivet by Reif Larson appears to have been sparked by an excerpt in Vanity Fair magazine and a Boston Globe writeup that focuses as much on the $900,000 advance paid for the book by Penguin Press as it does on the book’s 12 year-old narrator, Tecumseh Sparrow Spivet. The book follows the Montana rancher’s son on a journey to Washington (without his parents’ knowledge) to collect an award for the maps he obsessively makes, which are reproduced in hand-drawn marginalia that spills over the pages of Larsen’s book.

So far, library orders are on the low side (most in the 4-8 copy range) with reserves ranging from 17 to 30. That may be because early reviews of the novel have varied, with Booklist giving it a star, Library Journal fairly positive and PW and Kirkus more mixed. The book has also attracted publishers in two dozen other countries, and recently drew praise from the Times Online (UK), which called the writing “redolent of Mark Twain’s Roughing It in the rhythms of its humour and the picaresque deviations of its storytelling,” while also observing that the book “loses its poise” in the final chapters.

 
The Selected Works of T. S. Spivet
Reif Larsen
Price: $27.95
Hardcover: 352 pages
Publisher: Penguin Press HC, The – (2009-05-05)
ISBN-10: 1594202176
ISBN-13: 9781594202179

UPDATE; We just learned that Spivet is also available in audio:

  • Publisher: Penguin Audio; Unabridged edition (May 5, 2009)
  • ISBN-10: 0143144650
  • ISBN-13: 978-0143144656

‘Rapt’ Gains Attention from NYT

Wednesday, May 6th, 2009

Are library buyers multitasking too much to keep track of Winifred Gallagher’s new book, Rapt: Attention and the Focused Life? It’s jumped to #26 on Amazon.com after a New York Times “Science” section story by John Tierney on “The Science of Concentration,” and by critic Laura Miller in Salon. Yet the libraries we checked showed low ordering (in some cases, no copies; in others, a single copy against 35 or more requests).

Gallagher argues that how we focus our attention is not only the key to mood, productivity and relationships, it’s the sum of our very being. A journalist and author of two other psychology books, she came to recognize the importance of attention while fighting cancer, when she discovered that consciously focusing on meaningful, productive or energizing subjects transformed her experience of the world. On a practical level, she recommends starting the workday with 90 minutes of undistracted attention on your most important task—bearing in mind that the brain can take 20 minutes to reset after an interruption.

Both reviewers clearly found Gallagher’s ideas engaging, although Miller found her writing “frustratingly scattered, self-contradicting and platitudinous” and questioned if we really need “more hand-wringing about families who don’t have dinner together or reheated summaries of scientific studies demonstrating the power of positive thinking?” Yet the Amazon rankings make clear that this subject strikes struck a chord. At this rate, we can expect to see it on bestseller lists next week.

Rapt: Attention and the Focused Life
Winifred Gallagher
Price: $25.95
Hardcover: 256 pages
Publisher: Penguin Press HC, The – (2009-04-16)
ISBN-10: 1594202109
ISBN-13: 9781594202100

Rapt is also available on audio from Brilliance:

  • 7 audio CDs: 978-1-4233-9321-4
    $82.97 
  • 1 MP3-CD: 978-1-4233-9323-8
    $39.97 

And a downloadable e-book is available from Overdrive:

  • Adobe EPUB eBook ISBN:  9781101032596
    $25.95 

‘Cook Yourself Thin’ #1 on Amazon

Wednesday, May 6th, 2009

Note from Nora:

With this post, we’re happy to welcome a new voice and an old friend, Charlotte Abbott. 

Charlotte’s career has been in the publishing business, as a book editor in several publishing houses, and as a columnist and book review editor for Publishers Weekly (she wrote the popular “Book News” column for many years and introduced regular features such as “Galleys to Grab” and the “On-sale Calendar”). In addition to her strong knowledge of publishing, she has an appreciation of libraries (she works on author programming for the Brooklyn Public Library) and looks forward to getting to know the EarlyWord readers.

Charlotte will be sharing the day-to-day coverage with me, freeing me up to develop new features for the site. 

———————————————-

Cook Yourself Thin: Skinny Meals You Can Make in Minutes lands in the top spot on Amazon’s bestseller list today, thanks to last night’s premiere of a new Lifetime TV show by the same name.  But a quick check of several major library systems shows no copies on order.

The book includes low-calorie versions of favorite recipes and a guide to healthy alternatives to common foods. Typical tips include mashing potatoes with the skins to make them taste more buttery, and adding cauliflower and scallions to reduce the calories in each serving.

On the show, three chefs advise a dieter on how to cut calories in familiar recipes and follow up six months later to check their progress. The book and series are based on British versions with the same name.

 
Cook Yourself Thin: Skinny Meals You Can Make in Minutes
Lifetime Television
Price: $19.99
Paperback: 240 pages
Publisher: Voice 04-28-09
ISBN-10: 1401341136
ISBN-13: 9781401341138

 

For Fans of Darling Jim

Tuesday, May 5th, 2009

If you’re a fan of the engrossing first novel by Christian Moerk, Darling Jim, you probably read the acknowledgments; I find myself doing this with books I love, it’s my way of trying to extend the experience.

The publishing site GalleyCat not only read the acknowledgments, but also discovered an interesting story lurking there; something that can bring an added dimension to book discussions — The Darling Jim Ending Americans Haven’t Seen

Darling Jim
Christian Moerk
Price: $25.00
Hardcover: 304 pages
Publisher: Henry Holt and Co. – (2009-03-31)
ISBN-10: 0805089470
ISBN-13: 9780805089479

Tantor is releasing Darling Jim in audio this month, narrated by Stephen Hoye and Justine Eyre. The audio is also downloadable from OverDrive.

  • 9 Audio CDs (Library Binder Pkg)    EAN: 9781400141982 $55.99 


  • 1 Mp3-CD (Retail Slimline Pkg)        EAN: 9781400161980 $19.99
  • 9 Audio CDs (Retail Unikeep Pkg)    EAN: 9781400111985 $27.99

Elizabeth Edwards on Oprah

Monday, May 4th, 2009

Elizabeth Edwards’s book, Resilience has been in the headlines for the past week. She gives her first interview about the book to Oprah on Thursday.

Libraries are showing heavy reserves on light ordering.

The book was originally scheduled for release next week, but the publication date has been moved to this Friday.

oprah

 

Resilience: Reflections on the Burdens and Gifts of Facing Life’s Adversities
Elizabeth Edwards
Price: $22.95
Hardcover: 224 pages
Publisher: Broadway – (2009-05-08)
ISBN-10: 076793136X
ISBN-13: 9780767931366

Also in audio from Random House:

  • ISBN-10: 0307577198
  • ISBN-13: 978-0307577191

Reserve Alert — Age of the Unthinkable

Tuesday, April 28th, 2009

In today’s NYT, Michiko Kakutani calls Age of the Unthinkable “provocative.” (Books of The Times: The Era of Adapting Quickly).

The book has been on the extended NYT bestseller list for two weeks. Some libraries are showing heavy reserves on light ordering.

The Age of the Unthinkable: Why the New World Disorder Constantly Surprises Us And What We Can Do About It
Joshua Cooper Ramo
Price: $25.99
Hardcover: 288 pages
Publisher: Little, Brown and Company – (2009-03-23)
ISBN-10: 0316118087
ISBN-13: 9780316118088

It’s also available as an unabridged audio from Hachette Audio:

  • ISBN-10: 1600247202
  • ISBN-13: 978-1600247200

And, downloadable from Overdrive in both eBook and audio.

The Go-To Guy on Swine Flu

Tuesday, April 28th, 2009

Talk about timing. Philip Alcabes’s book Dread: How Fear and Fantasy have Fueled Epidemics from the Black Death to the Avian Flu came out just two weeks ago.

He appeared on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart last Wednesday, before the swine flu stories hit the news.

The Daily Show With Jon Stewart M – Th 11p / 10c
Philip Alcabes
thedailyshow.com
Daily Show
Full Episodes
Economic Crisis Political Humor

Since the news broke, his appearance schedule has speeded up:

Stories by Alcabes are scheduled to appear soon in the Wall street Journal later this week or early next week, in the Washington Post, and in The Nation.

The book received a starred review on Publishers Weekly.com last month (review only on the Web).

It appears that few libraries have ordered it.

Dread: How Fear and Fantasy have Fueled Epidemics from the Black Death to the Avian Flu
Philip Alcabes
Price: $26.95
Hardcover: 336 pages
Publisher: PublicAffairs – (2009-04-13)
ISBN-10: 1586486187
ISBN-13: 9781586486181

Stewart Does It Again

Monday, April 27th, 2009

Jon Stewart interviews many authors on The Daily Show, but when he says, “You’ve got to read this book,” it constitutes a “heavy reserve alert.”

Getting the magic last week was the President of Liberia and her memoir, This Child Will Be Great.

Watch the video, if only to see her make Jon a chief.

The Daily Show With Jon Stewart M – Th 11p / 10c
Ellen Johnson Sirleaf
thedailyshow.com
Daily Show
Full Episodes
Economic Crisis Political Humor

Libraries are showing heavy reserves on very light ordering.
 

This Child Will Be Great: Memoir of a Remarkable Life by Africa’s First Woman President
Ellen Johnson Sirleaf
Price: $26.99
Hardcover: 368 pages
Publisher: Harper – (2009-04-01)
ISBN-10: 0061353477
ISBN-13: 9780061353475

Losing Mum and Pup

Monday, April 27th, 2009

Christopher Buckley’s memoir of his parents, Losing Mum and Pup was featured prominently this weekend:

The book is now at #35 on Amazon and is showing heavy reserves on light ordering in most of the libraries I checked.

Losing Mum and Pup: A Memoir
Christopher Buckley
Price: $24.99
Hardcover: 272 pages
Publisher: Twelve – (2009-05-06)
ISBN-10: 0446540943
ISBN-13: 9780446540940