Archive for June, 2013

FIFTY SHADES Has Its (Female) Director

Wednesday, June 19th, 2013

Now from Random House

Calling her a “surprise choice,” Deadline announces that Sam Taylor-Johnson has signed on to direct a film based on the mega bestseller, Fifty Shades of Grey, saying, “In addition to [her directorial debut, a movie about the early life of John Lennon] Nowhere Boy, which garnered her a pair of BAFTA nominations … she had only directed the short film Love You More which was in Cannes in 2008.” The article  notes that she is also developing a film based on Robert Goolrick’s A Reliable Wife.

No cast has been announced.


Wednesday, June 19th, 2013

1265-DIVERGENT-1265-COVERFriday’s issue of Entertainment Weekly offers a “first look” at the movie Divergent,  based on Veronica Roth’s dystopian YA best-seller, the first in a series.

The cover asks the question that’s preoccupying Hollywood, “Is This the Next Hunger Games?” (we’ll have to wait for the issue to see if they offer an answer). There will be a longer wait for the ultimate answer; the movie won’t be released until March 21, 2014.

What is not in question is that the female lead, Shailene Woodley, is a rising star, so hot that she has been cast to star in the adaptation of John Green’s The Fault in Our Stars.

Before the public sees her in either, they will see her in another YA adaptation, The Spectacular Now, opening August 2.

Spectacular Now, HdbkA favorite at the Sundance Film Festival, it is based on the 2008 National Book Award finalist by Tim Tharp, (RH/Knopf Books for Young Readers; Brilliance Audio).

The film also stars Miles Teller (who won kudos for his role in the remake of Footloose) and Jennifer Jason Leigh and is directed by James Ponsoldt.



The paperback tie-in releases on July 9 (Random House/Ember).


Wednesday, June 19th, 2013

The Shining GrilsLibrary holds are growing on The Shining Girls, (Hachette/Mulholland) by Lauren Beukes after it was reviewed on NPR’s All Things Considered by Alan Cheuse on Friday,  applauding it for its “heroine, the smart and spunky Kirby Mizrachi, [who] is as exciting to follow as any in recent genre fiction” and the “sharply described murder scenes — some of which read as much like starkly rendered battlefield deaths out of Homer as forensic reconstructions of terrible crimes.”

The novel is also moving up Amazon’s sales rankings, although it hasn’t cracked the Top 100 (it’s currently at #222).

The NYT‘s critic Janet Maslin declared it earlier to be ”a strong contender for the role of this summer’s universal beach read.”  Movie rights have been acquired by Leonardo DiCaprio’s production company, Appian Way.

Librarians responding to our Beach Read Challenge, were only partially won over. Joseph Jones of Cuyahoga P.L. says,

Short chapters and a fast pace makes this a definite beach read. The subject matter may turn off some readers who are not into serial killers, violence against women or just the casualness of the violence. Normally time travel is not an issue for me in books, but the way the author switches back and forth in time EVERY chapter does get a bit annoying. Having the date listed at the beginning of each chapter seemed to mock me more than help me figure out where the story was in the timeline. Also, when the author would try to throw in some cultural history for the different time periods I thought it had a tendency to drag the story down without really adding anything. The saving grace of the book though is Kirby. Broken, flawed and a survivor in every sense of the word, she burns with an intensity that for me defines “shining girl.”

Liv Tyler To Co-Star in HBO’s THE LEFTOVERS

Wednesday, June 19th, 2013

The LeftoversWork on the pilot for a possible HBO TV series based on Tom Perrotta’s best selling 2011 novel The Leftovers, (Macmillan/St. Martin’s) is ramping up. Deadline reports that Liv Tyler is joining the cast to play Meg, whose relationship with Laurie Garvey, not yet cast, is pivotal to the book. Justin Theroux was cast earlier to play Laurie’s husband and town mayor, Kevin.


Tuesday, June 18th, 2013

Look familiar? The opening scene of the trailer for Martin Scorsese’s The Wolf of Wall Street, based on the 2007 memoir by Jordan Belfort, may remind you of another film starring Leonardo DiCaprio, based on a novel about a party-throwing Long Island millionaire with a dubious financial background…

…even though it’s set in a different time period.

The Wolf of Wall Street opens on November 15. Tie-ins in trade paperback (RH/Bantam) and audio (RH Audio; read by Bobby Cannavale) will be released in early October. The original trade paperback edition is still available.

Catching the WolfFor those who want even more, Belfort wrote a followup, Catching the Wolf of Wall Street: More Incredible True Stories of Fortunes, Schemes, Parties, and Prison, which is still available in trade paperback (RH/Bantam).

Choose Your Own Movie Ending

Monday, June 17th, 2013

CHoose Your Own...That staple of ’80’s and ’90’s childrens book publishing, the Choose Your Own Adventure series, is heading for the big-screen, according to the Hollywood Reporter, with Fox working on a “crossplatform four-quadrant action-adventure franchise.”

Translating that into English, the books may be adapted not only as a movie, but also as a TV show and/or a game and will aim to capture the four major demographics (male/female, over/under 25 years old).

The movie producers will have some choosing to do of their own. The series consists of 185 titles, set in many different places and time periods.


Monday, June 17th, 2013

Boys in the BoatHolds are heavy in many libraries for The Boys in the Boat: Nine Americans and Their Epic Quest for Gold at the 1936 Berlin Olympics
by Daniel James Brown (Penguin/Viking; Penguin Audio; Thorndike). It debuts on the 6/23 NYT NF Best Seller list at #12.

USA Today calls it a “suspenseful tale of triumph” about a rowing crew from the University of Washington, whose student body, “drew from rough-hewn loggers, farm boys and girls not only with great physical gifts but the enormous will to make something of themselves at a time when there was little hope, given the double whammy of the Depression and the Dust Bowl.”

New Title Radar, Week of 6/17

Friday, June 14th, 2013

Ocean at the End of the LaneThe BIG book arriving  next week is Neil Gaiman’s adult novel The Ocean at the End of the Lane(HarperCollins/Morrow; HarperAudio; Harper Luxe), his first for adults since Anansi Boys (2005). His writing appears in so many different forms (including a Dr. Who screenplay), that the L.A. Times finds it necessary to help readers sort it out with “Getting to know Neil Gaiman.Ocean recevied starred reviews from all the pre-pub reviewers, but  Entertainment Weekly is a hold out, giving is just a B-Noting that “Gaiman is among the premier fantasists working in any storytelling medium, partly because he actually works in every storytelling medium,” they feel this one, “As a coming-of-age reverie … is a fitfully interesting trifle, but you’re constantly catching glimpses of a more interesting, darker, stranger tale farther down the lane.”

LexiconAlso arriving next week, is a book that has been big on GalleyChat, Max Berry’s Lexicon, (Penguin Press; Dreamscape Audio), described by one GalleyChatter as “What if La Femme Nikita had gone to Brakebills in The Matrix?” That may require a bit too much knowledge of pop culture; Kirkus calls it simply a “smart, compelling, action-packed thriller about the power of words.”

HumboldtThe nonfiction title Humboldt: Life on America’s Marijuana Frontier, received a strong pitch at the BEA Librarain’s Shout ‘n’ Share from LJ‘s “Books for Dudes” columnist, Douglas Lord, who said it, “uses lyrical, measured prose to lift the ‘redwood curtain’ on the lives of 4 people who are involved in Humboldt County’s major economical driver — the raising of marijuana. It gives a real sense of what life is like in the underground business.”

These titles and highlights of many more coming next week are listed with full ordering information on our downloadable spreadsheet, New Title Radar, 6.17.13

Kids New Title Radar, Week of 6/17

Friday, June 14th, 2013

We all love new books, but it’s often even more exciting when favorites come back into print. Arriving next week are several reprints that will make librarians’ hearts race.

Among the new titles, Alex London moves from middle grade into YA with Proxy. In series, Cate Cahill follows up last year’s Born Wicked with another title about the Cahill Witches, in the well-reviewed  Star Cursed while Katherine Longshore releases a companion novel to her book about King Henry the VIII’s court, Gilt, this one focused on Anne Boleyn and called, of course, Tarnish.

Also, get ready to raid the adult collection for Martha Stewart’s Favorite Crafts for Kids.

All titles highlighted here and more are listed on our downloadable spreadsheet, Kids New Title Radar, Week of 6.17.13


9781465408969   DK Readers
DK Eyewitness Books and DK Readers series (See downloadable spreadsheet for titles and ordering information)

Time to put in that DK replacement order for those popular titles that have been OSI packing slip after packing slip. They’re back!

A few years ago, I was on the subway and spotted a kid who was completely engrossed in a StarWars early reader. Thinking, “Whoa; I’d better get some of those for my library,”  I suddenly realized that kid was one of my students and that was one of MY library books. I put in an order for six of each title that day. Love ’em, all of ‘em, especially the LEGO books.

Henny Penny   9780547988672

Henny Penny, and Cinderella, both by Paul Galdone
(Folk Tale Classics series, HMH Books)

I am crazy for these classic stories retold and illustrated by Goldone. HMH began updating the entire series in 2011, with colorful covers. These are reprints done right.

Picture Book

Bogart and Vinnie

Bogart and Vinnie: A Completely Made-up Story of True Friendship, Audrey Vernick, Henry Cole, (Macmillan/Walker Childrens)

This fictional interspecies tale will remind librarians of the sweet true story of Owen and Mzee (Scholastic, 2006) as well as the never-ending, very charming stories of dogs who partner with elephants and cats who adopt ducklings. Henry Cole’s droll humor creates a winner (see a spread here).

Middle Grade

Bo at Ballard Creek

Bo at Ballard Creek, Kirkpatrick Hill, LeUyen Pham, (Macmillan/Holt BYR)

Hill, who wrote one of my favorite works of historical fiction, The Year of Miss Agnes, (S&S/McElderry), presents another story set in Alaska, this one about a little girl who is adopted by miners during the 1920’s goldrush.

Young Adult


Proxy, Alex London, (Penguin/Philomel)

Known for his middle-grade Accidental Adventures series, London crosses into YA with this adventure that Publishers Weekly calls “an entertaining throwback to ’70s dystopias like Logan’s Run, offering intriguing moral dilemmas amid breakneck action.” The “proxy” of the title pays the price for the main character’s wrong-doing.

Emma Watson To Star In A “Female GAME OF THRONES”

Thursday, June 13th, 2013

Harry Potter producer David Heyman is reteaming with Emma Watson for an adaptation of a debut novel Queen of the Tearling, Variety reports. The first in a projected trilogy, it is described as a “female-oriented Game of Thrones.

If that sounds familiar, another production company made a similar comparison when they bought the rights to Kristin Cashore’s Graceling, in April.

HarperCollins announced in February that they had acquired the novel from 35-year-old Iowa Writer’s Workshop graduate, Erika Johansen, for publication in 2014. The press release describes the plot,

Set three centuries after a small portion of the human race has populated a landmass that mysteriously emerged in the wake of an environmental catastrophe, the series follows nineteen-year-old princess Kelsea Glynn, who must reclaim her deceased mother’s throne and redeem her kingdom, the Tearling, from forces of corruption and dark magic of The Red Queen, the sorceress-tyrant of the neighboring country, Mortmesne.

Publication information is not available yet.

THE BLING RING, From Article to Movie and Book

Thursday, June 13th, 2013

The Bling RingThere are novel adaptations and there are novelizations, but this weekend brings a new twist.

Sofia Coppola’s film, The Bling Ring, opening tomorrow in NY and LA and expanding nationwide next week, is based on a 2010 Vanity Fair story by Nancy Jo Sales, “The Suspects Wore Louboutins,” about a group of affluent Valley kids who stole from celebrity wardrobes. One of the stars is Harry Potter’s Emma Watson.

The article has been expanded and released as 288-page trade paperback (S&S/It; S&S Audio). Reviewing it last week,  People magazine gave  it 3.5 of 4 stars. The Awl calls the book a “Smart-Person Beach Read.”

Beach Read Challenge Update; SHINING GIRLS

Thursday, June 13th, 2013

Every year, reviewers tell us which title they think will be THE book of the summer. In some cases, they have been right (e.g., Gone Girl, and Girl With the Dragon Tattoo).

The Shining GrilsThis year, when Janet Maslin declared The Shining Girls, (Hachette/Mulholland) by Lauren Beukes “a strong contender for the role of this summer’s universal beach read,” Cuyahoga P.L. buyer Wendy Bartlett, who was a bit skeptical, asked the library staff to get involved, read the galley and let her know if she should increase the library’s order. We asked you to join in with our The Summer Beach Read Challenge.

The upshot? Cuyahoga is sticking with their original order for the book, which came out this week. Staff reviews and the comments on EarlyWord have been mixed. Most like the main character, but think that this book, which involves both time travel and serial killers would have been better if the author had focused on one or the other.

Check your holds, however. Libraries we checked had waiting list of 10:1 on light ordering.

Rosie ProjectWhat is the Cuyahoga staff excited about? It’s a fall title, that has also recevied strong response on GalleyChat, The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion, (S&S, Oct). Below is Wendy’s annotation:

Need a laugh? Here’s the funniest book of the year. Don is a professor who thinks dating is a colossal waste of his time. (Think Sheldon on The Big Bang Theory, and you understand the kind of guy Don is.) So with the help of his friends, he devises a questionnaire to find the perfect wife, and ends up helping someone completely unexpected. You’ll love this main character. Customers who liked The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time or Temple Grandin’s books will enjoy this light-hearted look at living with Asperger’s. It also reminded me of The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry, last year’s big Brit import. This book was released in the U.K. first and was a big hit (read the review in The Guardian).  I think it’ll be a big hit here too; this will be a great reader’s advisory title.

The e-galley is currently available for download from Edelweiss and NetGalley, so you can join in on this one, too. Let us know what you think in the comments section below.

Meet Miss Havisham

Thursday, June 13th, 2013

If your image of Dicken’s Miss Havisham is one of an ancient crone, you are in the majority. When Helena Bonham Carter, who is 46, was approached to play the role in the new adaptation of Great Expectations, she tells the Telegraph, it was “like a slap in the face.”


But the film’s director, Mike Newell (who has led dozens of films, including Four Weddings and a Funeral and the fourth Harry Potter), explained, “if you read the book she’s actually in her 40’s.” She took the role.

Released last fall in the UK, it was recently announced that it will debut in the US this coming October 11th.

HavishamShortly after, another U.K. import, a novel that imagines Havisham’s early life will be released. It’s a fall pick by Kansas City P.L.’s Kaite Stover, who described it at the recent BEA as,

Blending two of the human race’s greatest cultural productions—Dickens and beer—Ronald Frame’s Havisham, (Macmillan/Picador) explores Catherine Havisham’s privileged upbringing as the daughter of a brewer, her jilting at the altar, and her devolution into the bitter, love-scorned woman generations of readers have grown both to loath and ultimately pity. Frame successfully transforms Catherine from simply a bitch into a lover, a child, a mother (of sorts), a sinner, and possibly a saint.

Reviewing it, The Times of London said,

Dickens provided a perfectly adequate backstory for Miss Havisham, but this re-imagining will delight readers who (like another Dickens icon) have always wanted more. You might think you know how it ends, but Frame has a talent for thrilling Victorian melodrama, and he tackles the controversial ending (Dickens wrote two versions) with superb assurance. Best of all, he’ll send you back to the original.

Great Expectations has inspired other spin-offs, most notably, Peter Carey’s Jack Maggs and Lloyd Jones’s Mister Pip (which was also made into a movie), but this is the first to be based on Havisham.

The following “featurette” includes a comment by Carter that in Dickens’ novel, “the older generation uses the younger generation to heal their own heart.”

Backlist Best Seller: THE DOG LIVED (AND SO WILL I)

Thursday, June 13th, 2013

The Dog LivedThe latest title to hit best seller lists as a result of flash sales by eBook retailers is Teresa Rhyne’s cancer memoir, The Dog Lived (and So Will I)(Sourcebooks, Oct., 2012). It debuts on the new USA Today list at #10, after Kindle and Nook editions were discounted from $14.99 to $1.99.

As the top Nonfiction eBook on the list, it is likely to debut at #1 on the upcoming NYT E-Book Nonfiction list.

The book received strong prepub reviews. Libraries own it in both print and eBook editions.

Backup Singers in the Spotlight

Wednesday, June 12th, 2013

My Name Is LoveA new documentary about rock ‘n’ roll backup singers, 20 Feet From Stardom features previously “unsung heroes.” One of them, Darlene Love, ended up so far from stardom that she had to clean houses for a living (she eventually won a law suit against Phil Spector for unpaid royalties and was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2011).

Love is scheduled to appear on several shows this week to promote the film, including The Late Show with David Letterman, Good Morning America and The Today Show. Her 1998 memoir, My Name Is Love, was released last week in trade paperback (HarperCollins/Morrow). Booklist called it “wonderfully informative, with a scintillating soupcon of salaciousnes” and PW said Love’s “sardonic observations border on the hilarious.”

Love appears in the documentary’s trailer.