Archive for April, 2011

Better Than The Real Thing

Friday, April 29th, 2011

Earlier this week, we highlighted what we thought was one of the funnier of the Royal Wedding books, Knit Your Own Royal Wedding (Andrews McMeel).

Turns out it’s been one of the biggest-selling titles in the UK and is currently out of stock in the US. The staff the Everett Public Library in Washington State actually took up the challenge and knitted the entire wedding party. The resulting display gained coverage from the local newspaper as well as CNN.

Compare the photos below — we think the Everett Public Library knitters’ results are even better than those in the book.

Photo Credit: Everett Library staff
















Of course, it was tough to predict exactly what the family would wear, but the knitters got one thing right — Kate Middleton, confounding expectations, wore a tiara.

New Title Radar: Week of May 1

Friday, April 29th, 2011

With Mother’s Day and Memorial Day approaching, new titles are dramatically on the increase – particularly fiction and celebrity memoirs. Here’s a look at what’s ahead for next week.

Watch List

The Sisters Brothers by Patrick deWitt (Ecco) is a picaresque novel about two hired guns, the fabled Sisters brothers, set against in the California Gold Rush. Librarians have been buzzing about it on Galley Chat and it’s a May Indie Next pick.

The Story of Beautiful Girl by Rachel Simon (Grand Central) is an unlikely love story about a young white woman with a developmental disability and an African-American deaf man, both locked away in an institution in Pennsylvania in 1968, who fall deeply in love and escape together, finding refuge with a retired schoolteacher. It’s the #1 Indie Next Pick for May. It’s also the author’s fiction debut (although she wrote a well-received memoir, Riding in the Bus with My Sister).

The Moment by Douglas Kennedy (Atria Books) is the tale of a travel writer’s loves and betrayals, set in Cold War Berlin, by an American-born author who’s better known abroad (his nine previous novels have sold over five million copies, and he was awarded France’s Chevalier de L’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres). Kennedy spoke at a ALA MidWinter, at a panel hosted by LJ‘s Barbara Hoffert, who said “if other readers end up as engrossed as I was, then this is the year that Kennedy becomes a household name in America.” Early reviews are also positive, and it gets a 100,000-copy print run.

The Year We Left Home by Jean Thompson (S&S) chronicles the lives of the Erickson family as the children come of age in 1970s and ’80s America, as they grow out of their rural Iowan roots. It’s the #5 May Indie Next pick, and Entertainment Weekly gives it an A-: “even minor characters receive the full attention of the author’s prodigious talents; each one is drawn so vividly that they never feel less than utterly real.”

Returning RA Favorites

Caleb’s Crossing by Geraldine Brooks (Viking/Penguin) gets a 350,000 printing and is the #8 Indie Next pick for May.

Doc by Mary Doria Russell (Random House) is the #2 Indie Next Pick for May.

The Butterfly’s Daughter by Mary Alice Monroe (GalleryBooks) gets a 100,000-copy printing.

Usual Suspects

Sixkill by Robert B Parker (Putnam) is the last Spenser novel completed by Parker before his death in January 2010, and has a 300,000-copy print run. But this is not the last we’ll see of Parker – there are two revamped series coming. On September 13, Parker’s Jessie Stone series will continue with Robert B. Parker’s Killing the Blues, by a writer producer and screenwriter Michael Brandman, who co-wrote and co-produced the television movies featuring Tom Selleck as Jesse Stone. And in Spring 2012, the longrunning Spenser PI series will continue, written by Ace Atkins, whose last few novels have been published by Putnam. He begins a new series of his own with The Ranger, starting in June.

Dead Reckoning by Charlaine Harris (Ace Books) Sookie Stackhouse #11

The Devil’s Light by Richard North Patterson (Scribner)

10th Anniversary by James Patterson and Maxine Paetro (Little Brown)

Celeb Memoirs

There are several celebrity memoirs coming out next week – in fact, May is such a big month for them that USA Today featured several in a round up (remember when we thought the genre was dead?).

If You Ask Me: And of Course You Won’t by Betty White (Putnam)

My Lucky Life in and Out of Show Business: A Memoir by Dick Van Dyke (Crown Archetype) is slated for a lot of media. USA Today has an early interview, and Van Dyke will appear on Entertainment Tonight on May 3, The View on May 4, NPR’s Morning Edition on May 4 or 5, and the Today Show on May 5.

Does the Noise in My Head Bother You?: A Rock ‘n’ Roll Memoir by Steven Tyler (Ecco) is on the cover of the May 2 issue of People. On May 4, Tyler will be on Good Morning America.

Good Stuff: A Reminiscence of My Father, Cary Grant by Jennifer Grant (Knopf) is a memoir by the dapper film star’s only child, from his brief marriage to Dyan Cannon. Kirkus is not a fan: “It sounds like a lovely life, but it makes for an irritating reading experience.” On May 1, Parade will run an excerpt and the author will appear on CBS Sunday Morning.

From This Moment On by Shania Twain (Atria) is the mega-selling country singer’s memoir of her hardscrabble Canadian childhood. She will be on Oprah on May 3 and the Today Show on May 4;  plus a show called “Why Not? With Shania Twain” will debut on OWN May 1.

More Nonfiction

The Reading Promise: My Father and the Books We Shared by Alice Ozma (Grand Central) wowed the crowd at MidWinter ALA and at the AAP Author Buzz panel. Indies like it, too. It’s on the May Indie Next list and is one of the indies’ most-ordered titles for summer.

A Singular Woman: The Untold Story of Barack Obama’s Mother by Janny Scott (Riverhead Books) is written by a Pulitzer Prize-winning New York Times reporter.


The Kane Chronicles: Book Two: Throne of Fire by Rick Riordan

(Hyperion Books)

Hamilton Wins Another Edgar

Friday, April 29th, 2011

Michigan author Steve Hamilton won his second Edgar last night for The Lock Artist (Minotaur/Thomas Dunne; Audio, Brilliance; Large Type, Center Point). Also an Alex Award winner, it features an unreliable narrator. He’s an 18-year-old boy rendered mute by a childhood trauma, who has a natural ability to crack safes. It’s the author’s first stand-alone, after 7 titles in the Alex McNight series.  Marilyn Stasio gave it a strong thumbs up in her NYT BR Crime column back in January. Hamilton won his first Edgar in the First Novel category in 1999 for A Cold in Paradise.

The Lock Artist has was recently released in trade paperback.

The Lock Artist: A Novel
Steve Hamilton
Retail Price: $14.99
Paperback: 336 pages
Publisher: Minotaur Books – (2011-03-01)
ISBN / EAN: 0312696957 / 9780312696955

Lisa Von Drasek called the winner in the Best Juvenile category yesterday in her story about The Buddy Files. It’s the only book in that category that is aimed at younger readers (ages 6 to 8).

The winners in the other book categories are:

Young AdultThe Interrogation of Gabriel James, Charlie Price (FSG Books for Young Readers, 9780374335458)

Best First NovelRogue Island, Bruce DeSilva, (Forge, 9780765327260; Audio, Tantor; Large Print, Thorndike)

Best Paperback Original — Long Time Coming, Robert Goddard (Bantam, 9780385343619)

Best Fact CrimeScoreboard, Baby: A Story of College Football, Crime and Complicity by Ken Armstrong and Nick Perry (University of Nebraska, 9780803228108)

Best Critical/BiographicalCharlie Chan: The Untold Story of the Honorable Detective and His Rendezvous with American History, Yunte Huang, (W.W. Norton, 9780393069624)

Mary Higgins Clark Award (honoring books in the Clark tradition) — The Crossing Places, Elly Griffiths (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt)

Click here to view the winners and nominees in all categories.

Hot Galley

Thursday, April 28th, 2011

The librarian buzz on GalleyChat has made us a believer that S.J. Watson’s debut psychological thriller Before I Go To Sleep (Harper, 6/14) will be a hit.

As a result of the buzz, advance readers editions are now scarce, but the HarperCollins library marketing team has rounded up 25 copies for EarlyWord readers. Enter your name for a chance to win( Deadline: Wednesday, May 3, 11:59 p.m., Eastern; only open to librarians in the U.S.)

Watson, who lives in the UK, will make one of his few US appearances at the ALTAF Mystery and Horror program on Sunday, June 26, 10:30 to noon during ALA.

Before I Go to Sleep is also available as an ebook from NetGalley (one big advantage of eGalleys; everyone on your RA team can read the title at once — no passing around scarce print copies).

While you’re on NetGalley, Kayleigh George at HC Library Marketing suggests you also consider the following titles (quotes are from the publisher’s descriptions):

Long Gone, Alafair Burke, 9780061999185, July 1; Burke’s first stand-alone, “a dark and twisting psychological thriller with the intensity and depth of Harlan Coben’s Tell No One and Laura Lippman’s What the Dead Know.”

Domestic Violets, Matthew Norman, 9780062065117, Sept 1; “In the tradition of Jonathan Tropper and Tom Perrotta … a darkly comic family drama about love, loss, and ambition.” Pbk Original.”

Miss Timmins School for Girls, Nayana Currimbhoy, 9780061997747, June 21; “a  debut novel set in India during the monsoon of 1974…the story of a conventional young girl who leaves her cloistered small town home to teach at a remote boarding school run by British Missionaries.” Pbk Original

The Woodcutter, Reginald Hill, 9780062060747, Aug 1; by the author of the Dalziel & Pascoe series, “a stand-alone psychological thriller that combines the macabre suspense of Thomas Harris and the brilliant narrative of P.D. James, in a story about a mysterious ex-con looking for vengeance in his hometown.”

Waiting for Robert Capa, Susan Fortes, 9780062000385, July 7; an “English Patient-style novel about the real-life romance between the photojournalists Robert Capa and Gerda Taro during the Spanish Civil War.” Pbk Original

An Edgar Discovery

Thursday, April 28th, 2011

The Edgar Awards for best mysteries will be announced at the gala banquet here in New York tonight. Of the five finalists for Best Juvenile, the Buddy Files: The Case of the Lost Boy, by Dori Hillestad Butler (Albert Whitman & Co.) is the only title for younger readers (the rest are for middle-graders).

What! You don’t know the The Buddy Files?

Full disclosure. Neither did I. I tossed my review copy aside as soon asI realized that it was written from the point of view of the dog — to me, a tired conceit. But I was so wrong. I picked it back up a few days ago and read through the whole series of five in almost one sitting. I COULD NOT PUT THEM DOWN! I fell in love with Buddy, his new family, the neighbors who include the Cat-With-No-Name, aloof and smart, and his best dog friend, Mouse, a really big black dog (I’m thinking a Newf).

The voice of Buddy the dog is charming, engaging and perfectly honed. He IS a dog, not a smug, erudite human construct of a dog. Buddy is a mystery solver of the class of Encyclopedia Brown, Cam Janson and Einstein Anderson. In book one, the first mystery is – why was he left at the P-O-U-N-D (dogs don’t say that bad word)? Buddy has the deductive reasoning of Sherlock Holmes but the easily distracted nature of dog. He follows his nose and we do too.

The breezy style of the writing, short chapters and quiet humor of these books make them the perfect transitional readers for kids who have outgrown Nate the Great, want a mystery but have “read everything.”

The Facts:

The Buddy Files by Dori Hillestad Butler, Albert Whitman

1. The Case of the Lost Boy, (3/1/2010)

Newly adopted from the pound, Buddy (formerly King) investigates the disappearance of his new boy.

2. The Case of the Mixed up Mutts, (3/1/2010)

Some people claim that all dogs look alike. Was the switching of these two pugs at the dog park an accident or something more suspicious?

3. The Case of the Missing Family, (3/1/2010)

Buddy has been trying to figure out for the last two books what happened to the family that put him in the animal shelter. He finally finds a clue.

4.The Case of the Fire Alarm, (3/1/2011)

Bullying rears its ugly head at the elementary school where Buddy works as a therapy dog. Can Buddy get to the bottom of the mystery of the pulled alarm?

5. The Case of the Library Monster, (3/1/2011)

Buddy discovers a blue tongued monster in the school library.


Thursday, April 28th, 2011

The official trailer for the “Epic Conclusion of the Worldwide Phenomenon” appeared on the Web yesterday. The film premieres in London on July 7 and will be released on July 15.


Wednesday, April 27th, 2011

A book that librarians have been buzzing about on GalleyChat, Lost in Shangri-La, was featured on NPR’s All Things Considered last night. The book is based on a WW II incident that, as NPR puts it, “…had all the elements of an unforgettable story: There was a terrible accident in a harsh landscape, three survivors, a hidden world with a Stone Age existence, and a heroic rescue mission.”

Listen to the story here.

Zuckoff’s 2005 book, Ponzi’s Scheme (Random House), is about the man whose name became synonymous with the type of financial scam most recently made famous by Bernie Madoff. Variety reports today that it is being adapted as a film, with Milos Forman in talks to direct.

UPDATE: Entertainment Weekly gives it an unequivocal “A”

ZOMBIES Returns From the Dead

Wednesday, April 27th, 2011

Movie news has brought World War Z (Crown), Max Brooks’ “historical account” of a future battle against world domination by zombies, back to best seller lists.

Brad Pitt’s production company bought the rights to the book before its 2006 publication, but as late as last month, it looked like the project would sink under the weight of its $125 million budget. A new source of funding came through recently and director Marc Forster has begun hiring, with a view towards a June start date and release next year.

Brad Pitt will star. Yesterday, it was announced that Mirelle Enos, star of AMC’s new crime drama The Killing, will play his wife.

Pitt’s next book adaptation is Moneyball, based on the book by Michael Lewis, and slated for release on Sept 23rd of this year. He is currently filming Cogan’s Trade, based on the George V. Higgins’ mystery, with a planned release of March 3, 2012 (for a full schedule of books-to-films, check our Upcoming — with Tie-ins listing).

Get Ready for the Royal Wedding

Tuesday, April 26th, 2011

SO much classier than tea towels:

Knit Your Own Royal Wedding
Fiona Goble
Retail Price: $17.99
Paperback: 64 pages
Publisher: Andrews McMeel Publishing – (2011-03-29)
ISBN / EAN: 1449409245 / 9781449409241

Sorry to tease you; the book is currently out of stock. In the meantime, comfort yourself with this video:

Sampling the Hugo Nominees

Tuesday, April 26th, 2011

Here’s an idea to steal for your library Web site. GalleyCat has created a “mixtape” of the Hugo Award Nominees, such as the story Amaryllis, available in full on the Lightspeed site.

It’s a great way to give readers access to nominees in the novella, short story and novelette categories, many of which have not appeared in book form.

What the Indies are Ordering For The Summer

Tuesday, April 26th, 2011

Edelweiss, the company that creates electronic catalogs used by publishers reps to sell to independent booksellers, recently released a list of the top 30 most-ordered nonfiction titles, published before Aug 1.

Indies are on the lookout for titles they can handsell to their customers, so what they order is of particular interest (one caveat, however, only the publishers that use the Edelweiss system are included. While the majority of the larger publishers do so, there are a few exceptions, most notably, Simon and Schuster).

Some highlights from the list:

At number one is Erik Larson’s In the Garden of Beasts (Random House/Crown, 5/10). The next book after the author’s best selling The Devil in the White City (sadly, the movie of that title, which once boasted Leonardo DiCaprio in the lead, is now listed by Variety as a  one of “…a bounty of scripts based on bestsellers and cult classics collecting dust at every studio”). In the new book, Larson again explores an influential era of history through the eyes of a few players, in this case, the American ambassador to Germany and his family in Berlin during Hitler’s early years.


The #5 title, Lost in Shangri-La by Mitchell Zuckoff arrives today. The true WWII story of two servicemen and a WAC who survived an airplane crash in New Guinea, arrives with enthusiastic pre-pub reviews and drew comparisons to Unbroken by GalleyChat readers.




At #26 is a title many librarians fell in love with at ALA MidWinter, The Reading Promise by Alice Ozma, (Hachette/Grand Central Publishing, 5/3). The 22-year-old author is a passionate advocate of reading. Fortunately, for those who didn’t attend, there is a video of the event (see below).

Prepub reviews are strong; it  even touched Kirkus‘s famously cold heart, “A warm memoir and a gentle nudge to parents about the importance of books, quality time and reading to children.” It’s also on the IndieBound Next List for May.

Hugo Award Nominations

Monday, April 25th, 2011

Series titles dominated the Hugo Awards Best Novel nominations, announced yesterday. Women authors also dominated; 4 of the 5 authors are women.

The nominees for Best Novel are below. The full list of nominees in all categories is here. Winners will be announced on Saturday, August 20th, at the World Science Fiction Convention

All Clear, Connie Willis (Ballantine Spectra, Hdbk; 9780553807677); followup to Blackout; Audio, Brilliance — also nominated for Nebula Best Novel (winners TBA 5/21)

Cryoburn, Lois McMaster Bujold (Baen, Hdbk; 9781439133941); Vorkosigan Saga; Audio, Blackstone

The Dervish House, Ian McDonald (Pyr, Hdbk; 9781616142049)

Feed, Mira Grant (Orbit, Mass Mkt. Original; 9780316081054); the first in the Newsflesh Trilogy. The second, Deadline (Orbit, Mass Mkt. Original; 9780316081061), is coming June 1; OverDrive WMA Audiobook

The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms, N.K. Jemisin (Orbit, Trade Pbk. Original, 2/25/10, 9780316043915; Mass Mkt., 10/01/2010; 9780316043922); Audio, Brilliance; this is #1 in The Inheritance Trilogy. It was also nominated for Nebula Best Novel. On her author page, Jemisin notes she’s particularly excited about this nomination because of the “Hugos’ noted bias in favor of science fiction (and against fantasy), more notable embrace of well-known names (vs unknown n00bs), and most notablest aversion to girl cooties or any hint thereof…”
#2, The Broken Kingdoms came out in November (Orbit, Trade Pbk. Original, 11/03/2010, 9780316043960; Mass Mkt., 9/1/2011; 9780316043953).
#3 arrives this OctoberThe Kingdom of Gods, (Orbit; Trade Pbk. Original, 9780316043939).

New Title Radar – Week of 4/25

Friday, April 22nd, 2011

It’s the last gasp of the spring publishing season before we begin diving into summer. Below are the titles you will be hearing about next week.

Watch List

Stories I Only Tell My Friends by Rob Lowe is the autobiography of the film and TV star who made his name with the 1980s Brat Pack. The New York Times‘s Janet Maslin is a fan: “Mr. Lowe emerges as a canny observer of both himself and others, and as someone whose instincts have grown increasingly sharp over time.” But Entertainment Weekly gives the book a “B”, taking Lowe to task for devoting only four paragraphs to his 1988 sex tape scandal, involving a 16 year-old and another woman, and for omitting his 2008 nanny scandal, involving sexual harassment and blackmail acccusations. That may be remedied when Lowe appears on Oprah on Thursday, 4/28. Libraries we checked have orders in line with mounting holds.

Lost in Shangri-La: A True Story of Survival, Adventure, and the Most Incrediblea Rescue Mission of World War II by Mitchell Zuckoff (HarperCollins) is “an engaging story about the survival and ultimate rescue of three American service people who crashed in the dense jungles of New Guinea toward the end of World War II,” says Library Journal.  Well-received by librarians participating our special edition of GalleyChat, it’s the Indie Next #6 pick for May and lands with a 200,000 copy printing.

The Floor of Heaven: A True Tale of the Last Frontier and the Yukon Gold Rush by Howard Blum (Crown) gets an enthusiastic, yet mixed review from PW: “From a purely historical perspective, there should have been more information on Alaska as a Russian colony and American territory, but as an exciting narrative, this is a huge success.” Hollywood liked it so much that film rights were grabbed before publication; the author describes what it was like to make the film deal on WordAndFilm.


The Preacher by Camilla Läckberg (Pegasus) is the latest Swedish crime thriller from one of Steig Larsson’s heirs apparent, according to USA Today. Kirkus calls it “An adequate thriller, though without Larsson’s deft touches; sure to please church-hating readers of the Hitchens-Dawkins set.”

Usual Suspects

Bel-Air Dead (Stone Barrington Series #20) by Stuart Woods (Penguin) brings together three characters from his various series, as Stone Barrington heads to Hollywood. PW says, “Series fans will find Barrington as shrewd, sexy, and glib as ever.”

A Turn in the Road (Blossom Street Series #8) by Debbie Macomber finds a mother on a cross country road trip with her daughter and ex-mother-in-law. PW says, “Themes of forgiving old hurts and finding new love will resonate with readers in search of a gently romantic tale.”

Born of Shadows (League Series #5) by Sherrilyn Kenyon (Grand Central) unites a soldier of fortune and a body guard in the latest paranormal romance from the mega-bestselling author.

Young Adult

We’ll Always Have Summer by Jenny Han (Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing) is the last installment in this trilogy romance. Kirkus says “Han’s impressive ear for and pitch-perfect reproduction of the interactions between not-quite-adult older teens make this an appealing conclusion.”

THE PASSAGE Moving Closer to Screen

Thursday, April 21st, 2011

After being signed based on a manuscript back in 2007, there’s been little news about the adaptation of last summer’s debut sci fi hit, The Passage by Justin Cronin (Ballantine). That changed this week with the announcement that Ridley Scott’s been replaced as director by Matt Reeves and the script is being rewritten, with Scott producing. Reeves, who directed Let Me In, is described by The Hollywood Reporter as “thoughtful and intellectual.”

The book was planned as the first in a trilogy. When will the next one come out? Random House tells us that book 2, The Twelve is scheduled to pub summer 2012.

The trade paperback of The Passage arrives next month, with quite a different cover from the hardback.

The Passage: A Novel
Justin Cronin
Retail Price: $16.00
Paperback: 800 pages
Publisher: Ballantine Books – (2011-05-17)
ISBN / EAN: 0345504976 / 9780345504975


Thursday, April 21st, 2011

If winning the Pulitzer Prize was not enough, Jennifer Egan has just closed a deal for an HBO series based on A Visit from the Goon Squad, reports Deadline.

The book was recently released in paperback and instantly went on to the NYT Trade Paperback best seller list, where it remains. It has been a slow build. In hardcover, it never made it on to the main list, but was on the extended list for just 2 weeks, seven months after publication.

A Visit from the Goon Squad
Jennifer Egan
Retail Price: $14.95
Paperback: 352 pages
Publisher: Anchor – (2011-03-22)
ISBN / EAN: 9780307477477 / 9780307477477


AudioGo (formerly BBC AudioBooks); 9780792771746; 8 CD’s; $79.95
Adobe EPUB eBook from OverDrive