Six Titles to Know,
The Week of May 11

There are no clear-cut holds leaders this week, but familiar names will hit the shelves, like Jefferey Deaver, Steve Martini, Lincoln Child and Craig Johnson.

Some libraries are showing holds on a debut, Luckiest Girl Alive, media attention will be focused on Tom Brokaw’s memoir about living with multiple melanoma and several titles arrive with Indie Next recommendations.

The titles covered here, and several more notable titles arriving next week, are listed, with ordering information and alternate formats, on our downloadable spreadsheet, EarlyWord New Title Radar, Week of May 11.

Title to Watch

Luckiest Girl AliveLuckiest Girl Alive, Jessica Knoll, (S&S; S&S Audio)

One of many titles described by some as a successor to Gone Girl, underscored on the cover by a blurb that reads, “With the cunning and nerve of Gillian Flynn, but with an intensity all its own, ” it gets a strong B+ from Entertainmet Weekly.

There are some similarities between the two books, notes the reviewer,

Both have dark, twisty, true-crime-inspired plots … Both have been optioned by Reese Witherspoon to become dark, twisty, true-crime-inspired films. And both feature shrewd, prickly, damaged heroines who have made their careers at glossy magazines—much like Knoll and Gone Girl author Gillian Flynn once did. (Knoll used to work at Cosmo and Self; Flynn used to work here at EW.).

However, says EW, Luckiest Girl Alive “isn’t innovative enough to inherit Flynn’s mantle, but it’s gripping enough to earn a spot on a nearby shelf.” Our GalleyChatters agreed, considering it an “absorbing study of a woman trying to get out of a bad past by remaking herself into a perfect mold … not quite the Gone Girl readalike we expected, it was still fascinating.”

Check your holds; they are heavy relative to copies ordered in some libraries.

Media Attention

9781400069699_f1f9fA Lucky Life Interrupted: A Memoir of Hope, Tom Brokaw, (Random House; RH & BOT Audio; RH Large Print)

Brokaw writes about dealing with his diagnosis of multiple melanoma. Heavy media attention begins tonight with NBC’s Dateline, promoted on NBC Nightly News on Thursday:

Coming up:

NBC Today Show – 5/11
NPR Fresh Air – airs 5/13
Comedy Central Daily Show – 5/12
PBS Charlie Rose – 5/12

9781455585663_81736The Great War of Our Time: The CIA’s Fight Against Terrorism–From al Qa’ida to ISIS, Michael Morell, Bill Harlow, (Hachette/Twelve; Hachette Audio; Hachette Large Print)

Written by the former deputy director of the C.I.A., this book is getting press coverage. The Washington Post says the book includes “the bleakest assessments of the CIA’s performance during that tumultuous period by an official who was in the agency’s leadership at the time” and the New York Times says the author asserts, “Republicans, in their eagerness to politicize the killing of the American ambassador to Libya, repeatedly distorted the agency’s analysis of events.”

Peer Picks

9781101874318_f1a6dThe Book of Aron, Jim Shepard, RH/Knopf; RH & BOT Audio)

In a very early rave in the Washington Post, Ron Charles calls The Book of Aron no less than a masterpiece.  New York magazine lists it as one of “8 Books You Need to Read This May,” saying, “Shepard deserves attention far beyond the cozy circle of writers who worship him … Aron retells the well-known story of a doomed Warsaw Ghetto orphanage through the eyes of a very young and very flawed would-be survivor, eluding mawkishness and thereby evoking tears.”

Indie Next:

Shepard has performed a small miracle in channeling the voice of a young Jewish boy trapped in the Warsaw ghetto. He traces Aron’s progression from country bumpkin and reluctant scholar to a ‘macher’ on the streets of Warsaw, where his cunning and courage prolong the lives of his increasingly oppressed and desperate family. Aron’s story meshes with that of Janusz Korczak, well-known pediatrician, child rights advocate, and orphanage operator, when Aron is rescued from the streets after the death of all of his family members. The final scene of Korczak leading the ragtag parade of children to the train to Treblinka closes an astonishing portrayal of the Nazi evil viewed through the eyes of a very resourceful, tragic, but indefatigable child.” —Darwin Ellis, Books on the Common, Ridgefield CT

9780393248210_6b7f4The Green Road, Anne Enright, (Norton; Thorndike; OverDrive Sample)

New York magazine’s ‘8 Books You Need to Read This May’

Indie Next:

Steeped in the moist earth of Ireland, this is the story of the Madigan family and the life that forces them apart, only to return again to a home filled with memories. Rosaleen suffers greatly at the loss of her four children — not to death, but to lives of their own: her eldest to New York, another to Mali, one daughter to a hospital career, and another to the ‘big city’ of Dublin. The concept of ‘family’ still holds them together despite years and circumstances, and as Rosaleen announces plans to sell the family home, a last Christmas gathering proves profound. —Linda Bond, Auntie’s Bookstore, Spokane, WA

HOW TO START A FIREHow to Start a Fire, Lisa Lutz, (HMH; Blackstone Audio; Wheeler Large Print)

Indie Next:

How to Start a Fire integrates Lutz’s trademark humor, quippy dialog, and quirky characters with a story of three college friends who meet in Santa Cruz in 1993. Readers will fall in love with these three women as they experience failed marriages, career decisions, and other significant life events. Those who are new to Lutz will gobble up this standalone entry and then race to their bookstore to begin reading about the Spellman family in her earlier bestselling series —Terry Gilman, Mysterious Galaxy Bookstore, San Diego, CA

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