Random House’s major debut of the season, The Age of Miracles by Karen Thompson Walker (Random House; RH Audio; Thorndike Large Print, Aug) already received a rave from the difficult-to-please Michiko Kakutani in the New York Times. Its release this week is being greeted with even more attention. As a result, it broke into Amazon’s Top 100 and is currently at #51.

NPR’s Melissa Block interviewed the author last night, focusing on the book’s Twilight-Zone worthy premise; the earth’s rotation gradually slows, resulting in scary changes that turn people against each other. Walker tells Block that she came up with the idea when she heard that the 2004 Indonesian earthquake resulted in the day being shortened by a fraction of a second. The details of the physical effects of a slowing earth are based on science and were vetted by an astrophysicist.

Entertainment Weekly warns readers not to listen to the hype around the book, because it, “sets up the wrong expectations, since this is meant to be a small book, one that’s lovely because of its simple writing and quiet moments. You might not love it immediately. But it will grow on you. Slowly. Definitively.”

It’s #9 on Amazon just-released list of  “The Best Books of the Year So Far,” with the annotation, “Speculative fiction and a girl’s coming-of-age story meet in this gripping debut.”

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