EarlyWord

News for Collection Development and Readers Advisory Librarians

Nancy Pearl on NPR

Librarian Nancy Pearl appeared on NPR’s Morning Edition today to offer six “under-the-radar” reading suggestions.

9780156030533She recommends one of her “all-time favorite novels,” Broken Verses by Kamila Shamsie (HMH/Mariner Books; OverDrive Sample, 2005), a story of mothers and daughters and of political persecution in Pakistan, adding “More people need to read this remarkable Pakistani author,” who lives in England, and has written six novels and one book of nonfiction.

9781616954161_f4844Pearl also suggests the first in a spy series that she says gets better with each book in the run: Slow Horses, Mick Herron (PRH/Soho Crime; Blackstone Audio; OverDrive Sample), saying she loves the characters and that “It’s just great fun.”

She also mentions two titles which are recent discoveries:

9781250074515_6c4a89780316403238_d7044

 

 

 

 

 

Revolver, Duane Swierczynski (Hachette/Mulholland Books; Hachette Audio; OverDrive Sample) –“This is the first novel I’ve read by [him] and as soon as I finished it I went back and read three more.”

A Twist of the Knife, Becky Masterman (Macmillan/ Minotaur) — This one is set to be published in March. “The main character is a woman named Brigid Quinn, who is a former FBI agent now retired. Brigid is 60. I love that. When have we last seen the hero of a thriller age 60?”

The final two suggestions, not included in the on air discussion, are:

9781632864307_2caf89780544705166_b3559Please Do Not Disturb, Robert Glancy Bloomsbury USA (Macmillan/ Bloomsbury USA; OverDrive Sample)

The Turner House, Angela Flournoy (HMH/Mariner Books; Blackstone Audio; OverDrive Sample).

Holds Alert: THE CASE AGAINST SUGAR

9780307701640_f0865A book about the toxic effects of sugar is taking off in libraries, The Case Against Sugar, Gary Taubes (PRH/Knopf; RH Audio/BOT; OverDrive Sample). Holds queues top 5:1 ratios in most libraries we checked.

In addition to examining scientific studies that show sugar increases many health risks, the book also makes the case that powerful lobbies try to obscure that growing evidence, making sugar, as the publisher puts it, “the tobacco of the new millennium.”

Calling the book “hard-charging” and “game-changing,” NYT, in a review featured on last week’s cover, writes “Here is a book on sugar that sugarcoats nothing. The stuff kills. … [Taubes] implicates scientists, nutritionists and especially the sugar industry in what he claims amounts to a major cover-up.”

The Atlantic says it is “a prosecutor’s brief … fleshed out with four decades’ worth of extra science” and that “Taubes is a clear-eyed zealot for his cause, acknowledging his bias and pressing on for better science.”

Taubes was interviewed yesterday on NPR’s On Point.

 

I SEE YOU Tops LibraryReads List

9781101988299_bbe9bLibraryReads-FavoriteThe number one pick by librarians for February is
I See You, by Clare Mackintosh (PRH/Berkley; Penguin Audio/BOT; OverDrive Sample).

The sophomore thriller tops the just released LibraryReads list of monthly favorites.

“Zoe Walker sees her picture in a personal ad for a dating website. At first she thinks there must be a mistake. She soon learns that other women whose pictures have appeared in these ads have been subjected to violent crimes. Zoe contacts the police. PC Kelly Smith, a disgraced former detective, works to find the mastermind behind the website and redeem herself. As each day passes Zoe becomes more and more paranoid and suspicious of everyone she meets. Told from three different viewpoints, the tension builds and kept me on the edge of my seat.” — Karen Zeibak, Wilton Library Association, Wilton, CT

Additional Buzz: Entertainment Weekly offers a sneak peek at the first three chapters. Librarians chatted with the author about her first book, I Let You Go.

9780393609097_a8601Neil Gaiman’s newest, a spry retelling of the Norse tales, also makes the list, Norse Mythology (Norton; Harper Audio).

“After reading Gaiman’s account of Norse mythology, I doubt that I will ever forget how the gods of Asgard acquired their treasures. Thor’s hammer that never misses its mark, Freya’s incredible ship that shrinks to the size of a pocketable silk scarf, Odin’s powerful spear, all came to be because of Loki’s mischief. Above all, I will not forget the ill-gotten and ill-treated children of Loki who bring about Ragnarok, the end of earth and heaven and the death of the gods. Everything feels very real and very now when told by someone who has obviously drunk of the ‘mead of the poets.’” — Catherine Stanton, Madison Library District, Rexburg, IL

Additional Buzz: The NYT featured the book back in June, quoting Gaiman as saying “I hope the scholarship is good, but much more than that, I hope that I have retold stories that read like the real thing: sometimes profound, sometimes funny, sometimes heroic, sometimes dark, and always inevitable … [the] tales have accompanied me through pretty much everything I’ve done … They ran like a vein of silver through Sandman, they were the bedrock of American Gods.”

9781101985137_a7fd5The hot debut, All Our Wrong Todays by Elan Mastai (PRH/Dutton; Penguin Audio; OverDrive Sample) is also on the list.

“Mastai’s debut is a clever and funny time travel romp which turns into an, action-packed science fiction thriller. Tom Barren stumbles through life and accidentally ruins the glittering jetpack and flying car future of 2016, replacing it with the one you and I know. The world may be worse off, but Tom’s life is better than ever. That is, until his mind starts splitting between the two realities and he must track down the genius who invented the other future. Tom’s journey through the past, across realities, and inside his mind make for a thrilling conclusion.” — Dan Brooks, Wake County Public Libraries, Cary, NC

Additional Buzz: It is the #1 Indie Next selection for February and is among Entertainment Weekly‘s top picks for 2017 reads. We featured Mastai in an author chat yesterday and GalleyChatters spotted him back in September.

Live Chat
with Elan Mastai, Author of
ALL OUR WRONG TODAYS

This chat has now ended. Read the transcript, below.

Join us for the next live chat on Wednesday, Feb. 15, 4 to 5 p.m., ET with Eleanor Wasserberg, to discuss her upcoming book, Foxlowe.

To join the program, sign up here

Live Blog Live Chat with Elan Mastai, ALL OUR WRONG TODAYS
 

WINDS Blowing?

George R.R. Martin just  offered fans a bit of hope on the progress of Winds of Winter, the tenth and final book [as a reader points out in the comments section, Winds of Winter is actually the sixth volume and not the last. One more is planned after that] in his Game of Thrones series, in an exchange on the blogs comment section of his blog.

“Not done yet, but I’ve made progress. But not as much as I hoped a year ago, when I thought to be done by now.

I think it will be out this year. (But hey, I thought the same thing last year).”

This is his first official statement, according to Entertainment Weekly, since the author’s post over a year ago when he announced he would not finish in 2016 [correction: that post was about not finishing in 2015 before the 2016 premiere].

EW says “It’s still possible Winds could be out by the time [the HBO series] Thrones returns for season 7, which isn’t expected until this summer.”

That’s probably wishful thinking. In December Martin said he has “missed several deadlines” and “Sometimes I look back and say, ‘Did it really have to be Seven Kingdoms?’ The Five Kingdoms of Westeros, that would have been good, right?’

Holds Alert: THE DRY

9781250105608_46ab1Jane Harper’s debut thriller, The Dry (Macmillan/Flatiron Books; Macmillan Audio; OverDrive Sample), has already captured the attention of librarians, making the January LibraryReads list and leading our summary of titles that interested GalleyChatters back in October.

That enthusiasm it spreading. Hold ratios well exceed 3:1, as high as 7:1, in libraries.

In a strong review for the NYT, Janet Maslin writes Harper “has jampacked her swift debut thriller with sneaky moves that the reader has to track with care … it’s hard to believe this is her first novel … [it is] a book with a secret on every page [and] threats blooming everywhere, too.”

The thriller is rising on Amazon, moving to #166 from #734.

Prior to publication, Reese Witherspoon optioned the film rights and the book earned stars from Booklist, Kirkus, and Publishers Weekly. It is also an Indie Next selection.

A Less Private IDAHO

9780812994049_c7c00The debut novel by O.Henry Prize-winner Emily Ruskovich’s Idaho (PRH/Random House, Jan. 3; RH Audio; OverDrive Sample) is getting glowing reviews from a wide range of sources, from major outlets to local newspapers, from print and online, and from one coast to another.

The Dallas News, reprinting the Kirkus starred review, offers the novel “opens to the strains of a literary thriller but transforms into a lyrical meditation on memory, loss, and grief in the American West.”

The San Francisco Chronicle says it is “shatteringly original” and will upturn “everything you think you know about [the] story.”

The NYT writes “With an act of unspeakable violence at its heart … [it] is about not only loss, grief and redemption, but also, most interestingly, the brutal disruptions of memory.”

The Huffington Post ‘s headline is  “What Does A Literary Novel For The True Crime Era Look Like?” while The A.V. Club calls it “Poetic and razor sharp.”

It also tops the list of “15 Must-Read Books in January” as selected by Flavorwire and is the #1 pick by Real Simple of “The Best New Books To Read This Month.”

Holds are respectable on low orders thus far, making it available to readers advisors.

GENIUS Gets A Trailer

Just released is the first brief preview of a new series based on the life of Albert Einstein, set to air on the National Geographic Channel in April.

Genius, the first scripted series from the cable network, reports Deadline Hollywood, is part of a planned “anthology drama– telling the stories of the world’s most brilliant innovators,”

The Einstein series is based on Walter Isaacson’s best-selling biography, Einstein: His Life and Universe.

Academy Award-winner Geoffrey Rush stars as Einstein. Johnny Flynn (Lovesick) plays the younger Einstein while Emily Watson (The Theory of Everything) is Elsa, his second wife. Brian Grazer and Ron Howard are the series executive producers.

9781501171383_84698The tie-in, with new cover art not yet final, is set for release on April 4th:

Einstein TV Tie-In Edition:
His Life and Universe
, Walter Isaacson
(S&S; S&S Audio; OverDrive Sample).

Time for TIME AFTER TIME

The TV series adaptation of Time After Time, based on the 1979 time travel novel by Karl Alexander, as well its earlier film version, will premiere in a 2-hour episode on March 3.

The book features author H.G. Wells who creates an actual version of the apparatus featured in his novel The Time Machine, which is used by Jack the Ripper to escape to 1970’s era San Fransicso, with Wells on his heels (the Kirkus review gives an amusing summary of the convoluted plot).

For the TV series, the US location was changed to present-day New York.

A trailer for the pilot came out in May. Since then the female lead has been recast with Nicole Ari Parker as the character played by Regina Taylor.

Time After TimeNo tie-in has been scheduled, but the book is still available, in a 2010 paperback reprint (Forge Books, 978-0765326225; OverDrive Sample).

 

 

 

Golden Globe Winners

Adaptations took home several prizes from last night’s Golden Globe Awards, although the big winner was the original, La La Land.

Technically, Moonlight, which won for Best Picture, is an adaptation, since it is based on an unpublished school drama project titled In Moonlight Black Boys Look Blue by Tarell Alvin McCraney. 

9780735216686_c42dbFulfilling expectations, Viola Davis won as best supporting actress for her work in Fences. Denzel Washington, who starred and directed, was nominated as Best Actor, but did not win. Tie-in: Fences (Movie tie-in) by August Wilson (PRH/Plume).

9781478970637_a367bAaron Taylor-Johnson won as best supporting actor for Nocturnal Animals. The tie-in uses the original title of the novel, Tony and Susan, Austin Wright (Hachette/Grand Central Publishing; OverDrive Sample).

9780399594007_44c2dIn TV, The Night Manager produced three winners. Tom Hiddleston won for best actor. Olivia Colman and Hugh Laurie both won for supporting roles. Tie-in: The Night Manager (TV Tie-in Edition) by John le Carré (PRH/Ballantine Books; OverDrive Sample).

9780812988543_6d385The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story also did well. It won for best series, with Sarah Paulson, who played Marcia Clark, winning for best actress. The show is based on Jeffrey Toobin’s 1996 book The Run of His Life: The People v. O.J. Simpson. The tie-in edition (Random House; OverDrive Sample) came out last September.

Elle won Best Motion Picture in the Foreign Language with its star Isabelle Huppert winning for best actress, drama. The film is based on Oh… by Philippe Djian (Gallimard, 2012; not published in the US).

Hitting Screens, Week of January 9, 2017

After its limited release opening on Christmas Day, Live by Night expands nationwide this Friday. Based on Dennis Lehane’s Live by Night (Harper/ Morrow; Harperluxe; HarperAudio), starring Ben Affleck who also directs. 

mv5bmtuxmjizodi0nv5bml5banbnxkftztgwmdk3oti2mdi-_v1_sy1000_cr007041000_al_The first Friday the 13th of the year offers an auspicious start to a beloved series best known for its unfortunateness. The long-awaited adaptation of A Series of Unfortunate Events by Daniel Handler, aka Lemony Snicket (HarperCollins, 1999 – 2006), begins streaming on Netflix.

The show stars Neil Patrick Harris as Count Olaf and Malina Weissman, Louis Hynes, and Presley Smith as Violet, Klaus, and Sunny Baudelaire.

Reviews thus far are good. The Chicago Tribune calls it a “weird, wonderful masterpiece.”

A.V. Club says “A fairy tale for macabre bookworms who’ve graduated from Roald Dahl but aren’t ready for Edward Gorey … This blend of tragedy and twee … [is] Kids stuff with adult sophistication, driven by two-part stories, outrageous visuals, and the scenery-chewing of big-name guest stars.”

9780143129721_33886The horror film Bye Bye Man, based on a chapter in the 2005 nonfiction book The President’s Vampire: Strange-but-True Tales of the United States of America by Robert Damon Schneck (Anomalist Books, 2005), also opens on the 13th.

The film stars Carrie-Anne Moss, Faye Dunaway, Douglas Smith, Cressida Bonas, Lucien Laviscount, and Douglas Jones and tells the supposedly true story of three friends who get into trouble when they mess around with a Ouija board.

The adaptation has had a bumpy path to the silver screen. Yahho! TV reported “the pic was first slotted in October around Halloween, then moved up to June, then back to December. Now, it’s being pushed to next year at a time when horror films traditionally have opened well.”

No reviews yet but Movie Pilot has a story about how “true” the story might be.

A tie-in edition came out in May 2016 under the title, The Bye Bye Man: And Other Strange-but-True Tales (PRH/TarcherPerigee; Penguin Audio; OverDrive Sample).

Alone in Berlinbased on the German WWII novel, Hans Fallada’s Every Man Dies Alone (Melville House, 2010; OverDrive Sample) opens in a limited number of theaters and with no tie-in. Starring Brendan Gleeson, Emma Thompson, and Daniel Brühl, it received a mixed review from Variety when it appeared in the Berlin film festival. 

As NPR reported at that time, Fallada was a best selling author between WWI and II, with his books picked as book-of-the-month-club selections and adapted into Hollywood films (which got him blacklisted by the Nazis).

However, Every Man Dies Alone wasn’t published in English until 2009, after Melville House publisher Dennis Johnson heard about the book from the fashion designer Diane von Fürstenberg and tracked it down.

When it finally did come out here, it was a best seller and became a NYT‘s Notable Book and one of The New Yorker‘s Favorite Fiction Books of the year.

Finding the DIRTY PARTS

all-the-dirty-partsDaniel Handler, currently in the news for the upcoming Netflix adaptation of  A Series of Unfortunate Events, is also getting attention for his new book, to be released this summer, All the Dirty Parts (Bloomsbury USA; ISBN 9781632868046; Aug. 29, 2017).

Featured in a “first look” by Entertainment Weekly, the main character, Cole, is described as “a sex-obsessed high school student,” who knows a bit about his favorite topic. As Handler tells EW, Cole is not the “familiar stock character — the inadequate, fumbling, inexperienced young man, often a subject of derision or humor. Meanwhile, of course, many young men are having a fantastic and fascinating time in non-virginity, and that’s where I saw an opportunity for a story that’s universally recognizable but rarely talked about, or at least not honestly.”

Handler says he wrote the book after being “asked to give a talk on encouraging reading and teenage boys, who often fall off the literary bandwagon,” Looking back towards the books he loved at that age, he realized they had one thing in common, “they had a lot of sex.” Asked whether he worries about his Lemony Snicket fans finding this book, he replies, “It’s funny, isn’t it, that we worry about young people reading about sex, instead of, say, people shooting each other with laser beams. This anxiety is precisely what led to the novel.”

There will be one impediment to their finding All the Dirty Parts, however. The publisher classifies it as adult fiction. As a result, it not included on  EW ‘s  list of the “35 most anticipated YA novels of 2017,” but on the adult list, “The 23 Most Anticipated Books of 2017.”

A Real Life Indiana Jones

9781455540006_1130dCBS Sunday Morning features Douglas Preston and his new book The Lost City of the Monkey God: A True Story (Hachette/Grand Central; Hachette Audio; OverDrive Sample).

The book relates his adventures while searching for a legendary lost city in the rain forests of Mosquitia, which spans Honduras and Nicaragua. Preston tells reporter Lee Cowan that on that trip, he picked up  a parasite that requires a painful therapy.

The White City, or, as some call it, the City of the Monkey God, is a sacred place fabled to hold boundless treasure. “The legend is there was a great city in the mountains that was struck by a series of catastrophes, and the inhabitants thought the gods were angry at them, and [they] left, leaving all their belongings behind,” Preston says.

Using advances in laser mapping technology, explorer Steve Elkins and his team, which included Preston, found the city, braving pit vipers, mud, and foliage so thick they could not even see the site once they were upon it.

The team was jubilant, however, after they discovered rare artifacts, including carved figures left by a 16th-century citizenry who, as CBS notes, “fled the city in a desperate attempt to escape European disease and slavery.”

A National Geographic documentary about the expedition is also in the works.

Loan Stars Make The News

loanstars

Congratulations to the Canadian Library Association’s readers advisory program, Loan Stars for gaining recognition from Toronto’s newspaper The Star this week. 

Noting that the program was inspired by LibraryReads in the US, the story credits Loan Stars with helping to highlight new and upcoming authors.

It’s also had an impact on library staff.  Margaret Elwood of Toronto’s Fairview branch says it has encouraged her to read and recommend ARCs and eGalleys, “Before the Loan Stars program came along I knew that I had access to pre-pub books, but I never took advantage of it … I think it’s really raised the awareness to library staff that it’s something you can do and it’s really easy to do, and maybe you should do it.”

WHITE PRINCESS, STARZ

The trailer has just been released for the TV series adaptation of Philippa Gregory’s White Queen, set to air on the STARZ channel some time in 2017.

The sequel to BBC’s 2013 series The White Queen, adapted from the first novels of Philippa Gregory’s the “Cousins’ War” series, which also ran on STARZ. it features the same writer/director team and stars Jacob Collins-Levy as Henry VII, Jodie Comer as Princess Elizabeth, Essie Davis as Elizabeth Woodville, Joanne Whalley as the Duchesss of Burgundy, Michelle Fairley as Margaret Beaufort and Suki Waterhouse as Cecily of York. 

The sound track features a haunting version of Johnny Cash’s
I Walk the Line, by Halsey (incongruously, it is also used for the new Power Rangers trailer).

Below, Gregory, who serves as executive producer on the series, describes the history behind the novel.

The final book in the series, The King’s Curse was published in 2014.