EarlyWord

News for Collection Development and Readers Advisory Librarians

Order Alert: HUE 1968

Check your holds and orders for Mark Bowden’s new book Hue 1968: A Turning Point of the American War in Vietnam (Atlantic Monthly Press; OverDrive Sample). Some libraries we checked are showing holds as high as 8:1. Other have not yet ordered it because it was dropped in fairly late and prepub reviews are just appearing (Kirkus, June 1 and Booklist, June 6, both stars).

Bestseller Bowden was on NPR’s Fresh Air yesterday, giving the book, which has already jumped on Amazon’s sales rankings, another strong push to #28.

Calling it “a remarkable book” host Dave Davies has Bowden lead listeners through the run up to the battles of Hue and some of the bloody experience of the fight. He also talks about the strategy and individual stories that unfolded during the conflict, as well as its disastrous outcome for both sides.

The interview runs nearly 45 minutes and in conclusion he says:

“What investigating this taught me was that, in fact, I think it was right to oppose this war. It was a mistake. It reflected a triumph of ideology over reality in Washington, this anti-communist ideology which completely ignored the realities of Southeast Asia and Vietnam’s history and what actually was happening there. And I think this is kind of a periodic thing that happens in American life, where, you know, these concepts of the world and America’s role in the world lead us into conflicts that – and then we collide with reality.”

As we have previously posted, the book is getting strong reviews and screen rights have already been sold.

Behind Terrorist Lines

I Was Told to Come Alone: My Journey Behind the Lines of Jihad by Souad Mekhennet (Macmillan/Henry Holt and Co.; Tantor Audio; OverDrive Sample) is rising on Amazon after the author was interviewed on CBS This Morning.

Mekhennet, a national security correspondent for The Washington Post is also interviewed in the NYTdescribing her book in ways sure to bring in readers:

“A combination of memoir and reportage, this book gives the reader unique access behind the lines of jihad. This is a book to understand what drives people into the hands of recruiters, and the nature of the threat that is facing the West today.”

Getting to YES

Author and activist Naomi Klein appeared on MSNBC’s Morning Joe today to talk about her new book No Is Not Enough: Resisting Trump’s Shock Politics and Winning the World We Need (Consortium Book Sales/Haymarket Books; OverDrive Sample).

It leaped on Amazon’s rankings as a result, moving from #98 to #36.

Taking a cue from the UK election, she says what helped Jeremy Corbyn and the Labour party do so well and gain so many seats was that “he came out with a bold manifesto speaking to [voters’] better selves. He lead with ideas and that gave people hope.” She says the Democrats are missing a “tangible offer of how [they] are going to fix” what is wrong.

The new buzz adds to positive coverage in The Guardian and The Globe and Mail.

A Bookish Tony Awards

The 71st annual Tony Awards were announced last night. It came as no surprise that Dear Evan Hansen won big, talking home Best Musical, Best Actor in a Musical, Best Actress in a Featured Role in a Musical, Best Orchestrations, Best Book of a Musical, and Best Original Score Written for a Musical.

What might be a surprise is how very bookish the evening was as many of the shows have either been published in book form, were already available as print plays, or are based on other books.

Rising on Amazon’s rankings, jumping from #1,868 to #128 is the book Dear Evan Hansen by Steven Levenson, composed by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul (Consortium Book Sales/Theatre Communications Group).

Fans have more to look forward to. In November a book about the making of the play will be published, Dear Evan Hansen by Steven Levenson (Hachette/Grand Central, cover not yet finalized).

 

 

 

 

 

Hello, Dolly!, which netted Bette Midler the Tony for Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Musical, is based on Thornton Wilder’s The Merchant of Yonkers (latter retitled The Matchmaker). It came out in a new edition this April, The Matchmaker: A Farce in Four Acts (HC/Harper Perennial; OverDrive Sample).

The Best Play winner, Oslo, has been published in book form: Oslo by J.T. Rogers (Consortium Book Sales/Theatre Communications Group), while the Best Revival of a Play, August Wilson’s Jitney, has a tie-in edition, Jitney: A Play – Broadway Tie-In Edition by August Wilson (The Overlook Press; OverDrive Sample).

Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812, which won 2 Tony awards, is based on a section of Leo Tolstoy’s War and Peace. That section is out in Ebook format: Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812 from War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy with a forward by the composer Dave Malloy (PRH/Vintage; OverDrive Sample). There is also a “making of” book, The Great Comet: The Journey of a New Musical to Broadway edited by Steven Suskin with notes by Dave Malloy (Sterling).

While not released in book form itself, Doll’s House 2 picks up where Henrik Ibsen’s famous play left off.

Other winners in book form include Indecent, Play That Goes Wrong, The Little Foxes, and Present Laughter.

The Megyn Kelly Bump

When Megyn Kelly left FOX News some in the media obsessed about how well she would do in a less heated environment, but she is currently drawing her own heat for an upcoming segment on her new NBC magazine show, Sunday Night with Megyn Kelly which will give air time to conspiracy theorist Alex Jones. Indicating it may not be entirely positive, Jones has his own complaints about the taped interview.

Last night’s show created a bump for a book on a far different subject,  A Crack in Creation: Gene Editing and the Unthinkable Power to Control Evolution by Jennifer A. Doudna and Samuel H. Sternberg (HMH; OverDrive Sample). It is soaring on Amazon’s rankings after being featured on the show.

The book moved from #1,191 into the Top 10 sellers, sitting at #10. It is the first bump Kelly has ever generated, putting aside her promotions of her own titles.

The segment focuses on one of the authors, Jennifer Doudna, a professor in the Chemistry and the Molecular and Cell Biology Departments at the University of California, Berkeley. She is one of the inventors of CRISPR, a gene editing process that allows scientists to edit DNA strings in a manner she says is similar to fixing a typo. The technology will change evolution and can be used to cure deadly illnesses and wipe out disease but could also be used to create engineered babies and super soldiers.

Doudna is the go-to expert for the invention and talks about it in multiple formats. Here she gives a TED talk explaining how CRISPR works:

BLACK PANTHER, First Trailer

The first trailer has been released for Black Panther, the next in the Marvel Comics franchise. The movie doesn’t arrive until Feb. 16 of next year, but the Hollywood Reporter notes the trailer release is timed to the success of another current super-hero movie, to show that “the studio has its own Wonder Woman in waiting.”

Point by point breakdowns of the less than 2 minute teaser, which is trending on YouTube, come from io9, ScreenRant, and New York magazine, particularly noting the images of the Black Panther’s homeland, Wakanda, as well as the Dora Milaje, the all female bodyguards of the Black Panther.

The film stars Chadwick Boseman as T’Challa, the Black Panther, along with Michael B. Jordan, Lupita Nyong’o, Danai Gurira, Martin Freeman, Daniel Kaluuya, Angela Bassett, Forest Whitaker, and Andy Serkis.

A couple of tie-ins have already been announced.

World of Reading: Black Panther This is Black Panther (Level 1) by Andy Schmidt (Hachette/Marvel Press)

Black Panther The Battle for Wakanda: A Mighty Marvel Chapter Book by Brandon T. Snider, Michael Dorris (Hachette/Marvel Press – cover not yet released).

Viewers first saw Black Panther in the hugely successful movie Captain America: Civil War,
but long before that film the comics character attracted attention thanks to his revival in Ta-Nehisi Coates’s comics, now collected in
Black Panther: A Nation Under Our Feet Book by Ta-Nehisi Coates, illustrated by Brian Stelfreeze (Hachette/Marvel). See our earlier posts for more background.

Later this month, another spin-off of the series arrives in a collaboration between Ta-Nehisi Coates and Roxane Gay,  Black Panther: World of Wakanda: Dawn of the Midnight Angels.

Horn Book Award Winners

The winners of the 2017 Horn Book – Boston Globe Awards were announced on May 31 during SLJ‘s Day of Dialog. The awards will be presented aceremony on Friday, October 6, 2017, at Boston’s Simmons College. A winner and two honor books are selected in each of three categories: Fiction and Poetry, Picture Book, and Nonfiction.

The Fiction and Poetry winner has become a key talking point and cultural phenomenon as well as a best seller. This is the first of many awards it is likely to win (titles published in the first half of 2017 are eligible for the Horn Book – Boston Globe Awards). It has already been selected as one of the best books of the year so far by the Washington Post and Entertainment Weekly. It is also set for a film adaptation starring Amandla Stenberg.

FICTION AND POETRY AWARD WINNER

The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas (HC/Balzer + Bray; HarperAudio; OverDrive Sample).

Horn Book writes:

“Sixteen-year-old Starr Carter lives a life many African American teenagers can relate to: a life of double consciousness. Caught between her rough, predominantly black neighborhood and the “proper,” predominantly white prep school she attends, Starr has learned how to “speak with two different voices and only say certain things around certain people.” This precarious balance is broken when Starr witnesses the shooting of her (unarmed) childhood friend Khalil at the hands of a police officer. What follows is a gut-wrenching chain of events that alters all Starr holds dear … Thomas has penned a powerful, in-your-face novel.”

Honor winners are One Last Word: Wisdom from the Harlem Renaissance written by Nikki Grimes, illustrated by various artists (Macmillan/Bloomsbury Publishing; OverDrive Sample) and The Best Man by Richard Peck (PRH/Dial Books for Young Readers; Listening Library; OverDrive Sample).

PICTURE BOOK AWARD WINNER

Freedom Over Me: Eleven Slaves, Their Lives and Dreams Brought to Life by Ashley Bryan (S&S/Caitlyn Dlouhy Books/Atheneum Books for Young Readers; OverDrive Sample).

Horn Book says:

“A historical document dated July 5, 1828, lists the property to be sold from the Fairchilds’ estate. Hogs. Cattle. A handmill. Men. Women. Children. While no information beyond the gender and name — and price — of each of the eleven enslaved people is noted in the appraisal of the estate, Bryan lovingly restores their humanity and dignity, giving them ages, true African names, relationships, talents, hopes, and dreams … Bryan’s art is just as intentional. Facsimiles of the historical document serve as background for each slave’s introduction page, portraits of their faces taking precedence as they gaze out at the reader.”

Earlier, it was named a Newbery Honor Book , a Coretta Scott King (Author) Honor Book and a Coretta Scott King (Illustrator) Honor Book.

Honor winners are Wolf in the Snow by Matthew Cordell (Macmillan/Feiwel & Friends; OverDrive Sample) and Town Is by the Sea by Joanne Schwartz, illustrated by Sydney Smith (Groundwood Books/House of Anansi Press).

NONFICTION AWARD WINNER

Vincent and Theo: The Van Gogh Brothers by Deborah Heiligman (Macmillan/Henry Holt; Dreamscape Audio; OverDrive Sample).

The Horn Book review says:

“After vividly setting the stage with brief sections that introduce Vincent and Theo near the end of their lives, Heiligman takes readers back to their beginnings. We learn of other siblings and of supportive parents; we gain a sense of their childhoods in their father’s parsonage. Structured as a walk through an art museum, the book proceeds through the years, each section a gallery … Heiligman mostly employs a present-tense, purposely staccato narration that effectively heightens the brothers’ emotional intensity, their sufferings and pleasures (physical, emotional, intellectual, aesthetic, and spiritual), and, most of all, Vincent’s wild and original art. The layout, which incorporates sketches, subheads, and a generous use of white space, is a calming counterpoint to the turbulent narrative … The result is a unique and riveting exploration of art, artists, and brotherly love.”

It was a National Book Award finalist.

Honor winners are Undefeated: Jim Thorpe and the Carlisle Indian School Football Team by Steve Sheinkin (Macmillan/Roaring Brook Press; Listening Library; OverDrive Sample) and Some Writer!: The Story of E. B. White by Melissa Sweet (HMH Books for Young Readers; OverDrive Sample).

The presentation video is online.

The judging panel included Julie Roach, Cambridge Public Library (chair), Pauletta B. Bracy, North Carolina Central University, Durham, North Carolina; and Sheila M. Geraty, Brookwood School, Manchester, Massachusetts.

Alone And Adrift

CBS Sunday Morning featured A Speck in the Sea: A Story of Survival and Rescue by John Aldridge and Anthony Sosinski (Hachette/Weinstein Books; Blackstone Audio; OverDrive Sample) as their cover story this week.

In this harrowing but ultimately triumphant story, John Aldridge falls off his boat in the early hours of the morning while fishing in the Atlantic. After surviving sharks, cold, and twelve hours in the open ocean, the Coast Guard spotted him clinging to a rope. The rescue pilot told him they never find men alive, they just find bodies.

The story was widely reported, most notably in a 2014 NYT Magazine cover story. The Weinstein company bought both the book and the film rights.

The book came out in late May. Publishers Weekly calls it “hair-raising” and a “page turner.”

No word yet on when the film will premiere but it has some big names attached on the production side, including the producers behind Moneyball and Paranormal Activity.

Best Books 2017 (So Far)

Of making best book lists there is no end. June marks the half-way point of the year, so lists of the best books so far are following the many lists of best summer titles. Entertainment Weekly, The Washington Post, and more already have already released their picks. Expect additional lists in the next couple of weeks.

  

Entertainment Weekly’s “The 10 Best Books of the Year so Far” leads with Mohsin Hamid’s Exit West (PRH/Riverhead; Penguin Audio/BOT; OverDrive Sample). At #2 is Killers of the Flower Moon: The Osage Murders and the Birth of the FBI by David Grann (PRH/Doubleday; RH Large Print; RH Audio/BOT; OverDrive Sample).

  

The Washington Post‘s Book World’s lists “37 Books We’ve Love So Far in 2017.” Topping their list in fiction is American War by Omar El Akkad (PRH/Knopf; RH Large Type; RH Audio/BOT; OverDrive Sample). In nonfiction it is An American Sickness: How Healthcare Became Big Business and How You Can Take It Back, by Elisabeth Rosenthal (PRH/Penguin Press; RH Large Print; Penguin Audio/BOT; OverDrive Sample).

 

Many of the picks received media attention when they hit shelves and in the months following. A number became bestsellers and some, such as Elizabeth Strout’s Anything Is Possible (PRH/RH; RH Audio/BOT; OverDrive Sample) and the YA debut novel, The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas (HC/Balzer + Bray; HarperAudio; OverDrive Sample), are still on the charts. The latter, which examines police violence, has become a cultural phenomenon and just won the Boston GlobeHorn Book Award for Fiction/Poetry.

These half-year checkups are not simply useful to track what hit big or impressed reviewers, they also highlight overlooked gems that could use a circulation boost. For readers’ advisory librarians they provide a starting list of sure bet titles from 2017 and introduce, or cement the reputation of, key authors to know.

Esquire, Paste, Refinery 29, and Time (fiction and nonfiction) each have produced midyear lists as well.

Driving While Female

Terry Gross talks to author Manal al-Sharif on Fresh Air about restrictions on women’s rights in Saudi Arabia. Sharif has just written Daring to Drive: A Saudi Woman’s Awakening (S&S; S&S Audio).

She was filmed while breaking a long held prohibition on women driving. The video went viral, leading to her arrest and was only released after worldwide protests. She has since moved to Australia.

Saudi women are assigned to a male guardian, she says, who must give permission for almost anything, including leaving the house. As women grow older, their guardianship simply changes from one man to another. It’s no wonder she wanted to tell Ivanka Trump to “just be quiet” when she praised Saudi for their progress on equal rights, while women sit in jail for trying to further those rights.

LJ gives it a starred review, writing it is “a striking, nuanced memoir of what it means to ‘drive while female’.”

Hitting Screens, Week of June 12, 2017

    

Amazingly, no new adaptations open either on TV or in theaters this week.

Over the weekend, My Cousin Rachel, based on the 1951 novel by Daphne du Maurier was considered a disappointment, drawing just $954K in 523 theaters, as well as mixed reviews.

In its second week, Wonder Woman, considered “amazing,” is still at #1 in 4,165 theaters. In movie speak, it’s exhibits “a very rare hold for any superhero tentpole movie which typically ease between 50%-60% in their second weekends.” In another form of super-hero, Captain Underpants came in a distant third, but, given it’s low production costs, is still considered a relative success.

Seeing Double: MAGPIE MURDERS

Anthony Horowitz, the author of the #1 LibraryReads pick for June, Magpie Murders (Harper; HarperLuxe; HarperAudio; OverDrive Sample), is profiled today in the NYT. His novel is also one of eight titles on People magazine’s list of “Summer’s Best Books” in the new issue. The book is moving up Amazon’s sales rankings and holds are growing.

Horowitz is well-known for his Sherlock Holmes novels, Moriarty and The House of Silk, his James Bond book Trigger Mortis, and the YA Alex Rider spy series (soon to be a TV show), leading the NYT to call the Magpie Murders his “first original murder mystery novel.”

“I’ve always loved the genre, and I’ve written dozens of murder mysteries on TV [among them, the Foyle’s War series], but have resisted writing one as a book until now” says Horowitz. “Writing for me has always been about pushing the envelope … I don’t think anyone has done a story within a story, with two interlinked crimes, like this, so I’m pleased.”

He also reveals that he has written a second adult mystery, writing himself in as the sidekick, “Of course, I’m the one who is constantly fooled,” he says. While it has not yet been announced for US publication, The Word is Murder is due out in the UK this August.

During the interview Horowitz also talks about his love of magic tricks and says “A book does magic without saying, ‘Pick a card.’ A whodunit is, at its best, a huge magic trick that says, ‘I’m going to tell you a story.'”

To Screen: DRAGON RIDER

Cornelia Funke’s middle-grade novel about a boy who joins a young dragon named Firedrake on a quest for a magical place is headed to the movies.

The animated adaptation of Dragon Rider (Scholastic/Chicken House; Listening Library; OverDrive Sample) will be created byGerman studio , according to  The Hollywood Reporter, and directed by an award-wining German animator (Funke is also German).

The book has seen strong success in the US. It was #1 on the NYT Children’s Best Sellers list for over twenty nonconsecutive weeks and spent two years on the list overall. Booklist‘s starred review called it “a good, old-fashioned ensemble-cast quest in the style of Lloyd Alexander, with a bit of Puff the Magic Dragon added to the mix.”

Other titles by Funke have made their way to the screen. Both Inkheart and The Thief Lord have been made into films, although neither received glowing reviews.

No word yet on when the film will premiere.

CALLED TO RISE Gets Press

Dallas Police Chief David O. Brown riveted the nation with his humane response to the mass police shootings in his city last July.

Brown’s memoir, Called to Rise: A Life in Faithful Service to the Community That Made Me (PRH/Ballantine; RH Audio/BOT; OverDrive Sample) is getting strong media attention.

NPR’s All Things Considers has an interview in which he reflects on the lessons of his life and says the solution to the nation’s problems is “not yelling and screaming, but ‘let’s sit down and listen to each other and invite someone home for dinner.'” A notable touchstone from his own life occurred when a white student in his newly integrated grade school invited him home for dinner.

On The View he talks about people working together for a common aim, putting skin in the game if you want things to change, and the police officers who are not suited to do the job.

Brown has appeared on other ABC shows, including Good Morning America and Nightline. In November 2016, as he retired from the police force, Brown became an ABC News contributor. He has also been on CNN’s The Lead with Jake Tapper, Fox & Friends, and MSNBC’s Morning Joe.

Titles to Know and Recommend, Week of June 12, 2017

   

Nothing evokes summer like an Elin Hilderbrand cover. Says USA Today of her newest, The Identicals (Hachette/Little, Brown; Hachette LP; Hachette Audio; OverDrive Sample), “Take the summer setting (The Identicals hops between Nantucket and Martha’s Vineyard) and the plot device of feuding sisters, and you’ve got the recipe for another Hilderbrand beach hit.”

Two heavily anticipated memoirs arrive this week, Roxane Gay’s (see below) and Sherman Alexie’s You Don’t Have to Say You Love Me (Hachette/Little, Brown; Hachette LP; Hachette Audio; OverDrive Sample). Entertainment Weekly says that Alexie “blends poetry and prose, and varies widely in tone as he explores old memories and new grief.” It’s one of eight books heralded by People magazine in the current issue as “Summer’s Best Books” (list not available online).

Another memoir to note, although it arrives to shorter holds queues, is comedian Eddie Izzard’s  Believe Me: A Memoir of Love, Death, and Jazz Chickens, (PRH/Blue Rider Press; Penguin Audio/BOT; OverDrive Sample). If you are unfamiliar with this British cross dressing comedian, treat yourself to the following animated version of one of his bits.

Izzard narrates the audio. It’s as if he’s having an intimate conversation with the listener.

The titles covered in this column, and several other notable titles arriving next week, are listed withordering information and alternate formats, on our downloadable spreadsheet, EarlyWord New Title Radar, Week of June 12, 2017.

Peer Picks

Five LibraryReads titles publish this week:

Midnight at the Bright Ideas Bookstore, Matthew Sullivan (S&S/Scribner; S&S Audio).

“Lydia Smith is enjoying her comfortable life. She has a job she loves at the Bright Ideas Bookstore. Then one of her favorite “bookfrogs” (code word for eccentric bookstore regulars) commits suicide and leaves her his small horde of books. She discovers a strangely methodical defacement which is a kind of code. A delicate spiderweb of connections leading back to a murderous incident in Lydia’s childhood is revealed. This pushed me into reading ‘just one more chapter’ until late into the night.” — Joan Hipp, Florham Park Public Library, Florham Park, NJ

Additional Buzz: It is a June Indie Next pick too.

The Little French Bistro, Nina George (PRH/Crown; RH Audio/BOT; OverDrive Sample).

“Terribly depressed by the emptiness of her long marriage, Marianne decides to end it all by jumping off a Paris bridge. Her unwanted rescue and ensuing marital abandonment jolt Marianne into ditching her tour group and setting out for Finistere, the westernmost coast of Brittany. Keeping body and soul together by working at a seaside bistro, Marianne finds herself healing through the company of a diverse group of quirky locals. The Little French Bistro is merveilleux. It refreshes like the sea breeze sweeping the Breton coast.” — Sarah Nagle, Carver County Library, Chaska, MN

Down Among the Sticks and Bones, Seanan McGuire (Tor/Macmillan; Macmillan Audio; OverDrive Sample).

“In Every Heart a Doorway we met Jack and Jill, two sisters bound together yet alienated. In this installment, we learn how these two girls escape their parents when they exit the world we know for a realm of fairy-tale horror via a magic stairway, appearing in a trunk in a locked room. This is a story about two young women and the trauma that shapes them; a story about love, hate, and the thin line between. A captivating and emotional novella that irresistibly sweeps the reader along.” — Tegan Mannino, Monson Free Library, Monson, MA

Additional Buzz: Entertainment Weekly published an excerpt. Library Journal and Publishers Weekly star, with LJ writing, “Beautifully crafted and smartly written, this fairy-tale novella is everything that speculative fiction readers look for: fantastical worlds, diverse characters, and prose that hits home with its emotional truths.”

Silver Silence, Nalini Singh (PRH/Berkley; OverDrive Sample).

Silver Silence is a new chapter in the Psy/Changeling series. As the world tries to adjust after a peace accord, Silver Mercant takes center stage. As head of an aid organization reacting to rampant terrorism, she’s an obvious target. But Alpha Valentin Nikolaev has already decided she’s his to protect. Valentin and Silver start tracking down deadly shadow factions that want to undermine the Trinity Accords. Diverse and fascinating world-building are on full display along with a bumped up level of humor in the face of adversity.” — Jessica Trotter, Capital District Area Libraries, Lansing, MI

Additional Buzz: It is a Romantic Times Top Pick, All About Romance gives it an A grade, and Heroes and Heartbreakers offers an excerpt.

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo, Taylor Jenkins Reid (S&S/Atria; S&S Audio).

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo is a delightful tale of old Hollywood, so full of detail, that you’ll swear Evelyn was a real actor. Monique Grant is tasked with writing an article about the famous woman, so she interviews Evelyn who tells us all about her career, starting in the 1950s — and her many marriages. This novel will enchant you, and Evelyn will stay with you long after you finish reading.” — Lauren McLaughlin, Wilton Library Association, Wilton, CT

Additional Buzz: It is an Indie Next pick for June, one of eight books heralded by People magazine in the current issue as “Summer’s Best Books.” (list not available online) and a Summer Reading pick from the Associated Press. Real Simple selects it as one of “The Best New Books to Read This Month.” Showing early interest, Entertainment Weekly posted the cover and an excerpt over a year ago. Both PopSugar and the HuffPost have interviews and USA Today features it in their Happy Ever After section.

Five additional Indie Next titles hit shelves as well, including the #1 pick for July, The Rise and Fall of D.O.D.O., Neal Stephenson and Nicole Galland (HC/William Morrow; HarperAudio).

“For someone who approaches such serious scientific and technological subjects, Neal Stephenson can be outrageously funny. Combine that with Nicole Galland’s storytelling ability and you have a rollicking roller coaster of a novel. The authors mix together magic, witchcraft, time travel, science, and historical figures, both real and imagined, while delightfully skewering bumbling bureaucrats, pretentious academics, a rigid military, and other bastions of the establishment to produce a work that is both thought-provoking and totally entertaining.” —Bill Cusumano, Square Books, Oxford, MS

Additional Buzz: It is one of Entertainment WeeklySummer 2017: 20 Must-Read Books.” Kirkus stars, calling it an “Immense and immensely entertaining genre-hopping yarn.” The Washington Post names it one of “The Best science fiction and fantasy books to read this month.”

Hunger: A Memoir of (My) Body, Roxane Gay (HC/Harper; HarperAudio).

“This memoir is about trauma and privilege, self-loathing, and a silent fear kept secret for far too long. It’s about our obsession with body weight and body image, what happens when we internalize our pain and become self-destructive, and how very, very large people are treated in humiliating ways. The descriptions of addictive behavior and the journey to want to heal make this book more universal than I expected. When you decide that this is the day you’re going to change and you get out of bed and fail, that’s pretty normal. You’ll have another chance tomorrow — just remember to like yourself enough to overcome the fear of healing and try again. Highly recommend.” —Todd Miller, Arcadia Books, Spring Green, WI

Additional Buzz: It is another of Entertainment WeeklySummer 2017: 20 Must-Read Books.” It is also on the spring reading list of The Washington Post, BuzzFeed‘s “Exciting New Books You Need To Read This Summer,” and Real Simple‘s picks of “The Best New Books to Read This Month.” The Millions picks it as one of their “Most Anticipated” of the month (they also pick So Much Blue below).

So Much Blue, Percival Everett (Macmillan/Graywolf Press; HighBridge Audio).

“The newest release from Percival Everett provides ample proof that he is one of the most underrated writers in American literature. So Much Blue jumps among three different points in protagonist Kevin Pace’s life that have shaped his artistry as a painter and his misgivings as a man. These vignettes are sardonic, shocking, and sexy. Like life, Everett’s latest doesn’t give you an easy tie-it-up-in-a-nice-bow revelation — instead, it leaves you thinking about these characters days after you’ve closed the book, mulling over their futures as well as yours.” —Dante Bostic, Greenlight Bookstore, Brooklyn, NY

Additional Buzz: It is one of The Washington Post‘s “38 Books We Can’t Wait To Read This Spring” and New York Magazine reviews, calling it “Winding and Beguiling.” Kirkus stars, writing “The author’s deft plotting and wry wit sustain multiple levels of intrigue.”

Guidebook to Relative Strangers: Journeys into Race, Motherhood, and History, Camille T. Dungy (Norton; OverDrive Sample).

“I approached Dungy’s book with the same feelings I had when starting Maggie Nelson’s Argonauts. I had very little in common with the writers of these two books or the experiences related in them, yet with each I found myself drawn in by the acute intelligence of the writing and pulled along by the sheer compulsion of a story well told. Not only is Dungy a more than capable storyteller, she writes like the poet she is, and, like all poets, she leads us across a boundary, expanding our worlds.” —Stephen Sparks, Green Apple Books on the Park, San Francisco, CA

Additional Buzz: It tops Essence‘s list of “Five Must-Read Books You Need To Pick Up This Month” and is on Bustle‘s list of “9 Books That Your Feminist Book Club Needs To Read This Summer.” (They also pick Hunger, above.) HuffPost picks it for their “10 Buzzworthy Books From Memoirists and Essayists” and Elle names it one of “The 24 Best Books to Read This Summer.”

The Marsh King’s Daughter, Karen Dionne (PRH/G.P. Putnam’s Sons; RH Large Print; Penguin Audio/BOT; OverDrive Sample).

“After a childhood in the wilds of Northern Michigan, where her rugged, brutal father was the center of her world, Helena has made a new life with a family who doesn’t know her past. Now she and her father are hunting each other and Helena must use all the skills he taught her to survive. Fascinating, dark, and disturbing, The Marsh King’s Daughter is a psychological thriller most compelling in its rich descriptions of the survivalist training of a very tough little girl.” —Patty Mullins, Oblong Books and Music, Millerton, NY

Additional Buzz: It makes the NYT feature, “Summer Thrillers: Daring Escapes and Other Acts of Derring-Do.” It is a Romantic Times Top Pick and Coastal Living names it one of the “50 Best Books for the Beach This Summer.” Signature selects it as one of “The Best Books of June 2017” (they also pick Hunger, above).

Tie-ins

Two tie-ins come out this week.

After priming readers with a series of trailers, which sent various editions of the novel rising on Amazon, the tie-in edition of Stephen King’s The Dark Tower I: The Gunslinger (S&S/Scribner; S&S Audio; OverDrive Sample) hits shelves.

The Dark Tower premieres on August 4 and stars Idris Elba as the gunslinger and Matthew McConaughey as the Man In Black.

After getting plenty of attention at the Cannes Film Festival, the tie-in edition of The Beguiled: A Novel (Movie Tie-In), Thomas Cullinan (PRH/Penguin; OverDrive Sample) comes out, decades after the first edition hit shelves.

Sofia Coppola won Best Director at the festival for her movie adaptation, only the second time a woman has done so in 71 years.

The film is set during the Civil War and the plot involves a group of women sequestered in a girls boarding school in the South, whose lives are turned upside down by the appearance of a wounded Union soldier. Nicole Kidman, Colin Farrell, Elle Fanning, and Kirsten Dunst star.

Critics offer a mixed take. Entertainment Weekly calls it “a film that radiates with thrilling, deliciously dark southern gothic flair.” On Twitter, New York Magazine’s senior editor wrote that the film was “ravishingly shot, with a ‘damn she’s good’ MVP performance from Kirsten Dunst.” However, The Independent says it is Coppola’s “worst work.

The movie is scheduled to debut in theaters on June 30th.

For our full list of upcoming adaptations, download our Books to Movies and TV and link to our listing of tie-ins.