Titles to Know and Recommend, Week of July 11, 2016

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It’s a week with a cornucopia of titles recommended by peers (see below).

Fans need no recommendations for Daniel Silva’s latest, The Black Widow, (HarperCollins/ Harper; HarperAudio; HarperLuxe) the 16th novel featuring Gabriel Allon the Israeli art restorer/assassin/spy. In a starred review, Kirkus notes that this one  “is marked by a subtle shift in emphasis. Allon remains as compelling as ever, but Silva is clearly preparing readers for a world in which his hero takes a supporting role.”

If holds are any indication, and we think they are, Linda Castillo is headed for a higher spot on best seller lists with the eighth outing of her Amish-county mystery series, Among the Wicked, (Macmillan/Minotaur; Macmillan Audio; OverDrive sample), also a LibraryReads pick (see below). In 2013,  Lifetime adapted the first novel in the series, Sworn to Silence as the TV movie An Amish Murder. Her book tour includes several libraries.

The titles covered in this post, and several other notable titles arriving next week, are listed with ordering information and alternate formats, on our downloadable spreadsheet, EarlyWord New Title Radar, Week of July 11, 2016

Advance Attention

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Freedom: My Book of Firsts, Jaycee Dugard, (S&S; S&S Audio)

This follows Dugard’s 2011 memoir about being kidnapped at 11 and held for 18 years,  A Stolen Life. Propelled by media attention, including an overview by Diane Sawyer on 20/20, the first book was #1 on the NYT Hardcover Nonfiction list for four weeks. She will again be interviewed by Sawyer on 20/20 tonight.

9780802125811_e194aThe Voyeur’s Motel, Gay Talese, (Grove Press; OverDrive Sample)

Talese’s new book was embroiled in
controversy last week after the Washington Post questioned its accuracy. In a review in the daily NYT, Dwight Garner says the author, who at first said he could no longer support the book, then changed his mind, ‘is right to stand by his book.”

Consumer Media Picks

People Book of the Week:

9781455531189_8deb2 You’ll Grow Out of It, Jessi Klein, (Hachette/Grand Central; Hachette Audio; OverDrive Sample)

The head writer for Inside Amy Schemer, says People, “will make you laugh out loud, but she exhibits a vulnerability and self-deprecating sweetness too.”


Also picked:

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The House at the Edge of Night, Catherine Banner, (Random House; OverDrive Sample)

People — this “four-generation saga is set on an island near Sicily … The island is fictional, but consider this dreamy summer read your passport.”

Welcome to the Goddamn Ice Cube: Chasing Fear and Finding Home in the Great White North, Blair Braverman, (HarperCollins/Ecco; HarperAudio; OverDrive Sample)

An Indie Next pick, we covered this title  last week. In addition to being a People pick in the new issue, this memoir gets an A- from Entertainment Weekly’s top book critic, Tina Jordan, saying it “a remarkable … coming-of-age tale set largely on the Norwegian tundra — where she trained sled dogs — and in Alaska. … It’s amazing to watch as she develops backbone and grit, determined not to let anyone or anything stand between her and the icy landscape she loves so much.”

Peer Picks

A number of librarian picks arrive this week, all featured on the July LibraryReads list.

9781250061577_d5848Among the Wicked: A Kate Burkholder Novel, Linda Castillo (Macmillan/Minotaur; OverDrive Sample).

“In the small Amish locale of Painters Mill, police chief Kate Burkholder decides to take an undercover assignment in a community where the death of a young girl was reported. Her long time love, Agent John Tomasetti, is reluctant with her decision because of the lack of communication he will have with her. Burkholder begins to unfold the true horrors on the local farm and unearths the dangers the town officials suspected. She finds herself trapped in a life threatening cat and mouse game. This ongoing series is a true gem and a personal favorite.” — KC Davis, Fairfield Woods Branch Library, Fairfield, CT

9781101965085_e4678The Last One, Alexandra Oliva (PRH/Ballantine Books; RH Audio/BOT).

The Last One tells the story of twelve contestants who are sent to the wilderness in a Survivor-like reality show. But while they’re away, the world changes completely and what is real and what is not begins to blur. It’s post-apocalyptic literary fiction at it’s best. With a fast pace and a wry sense of humor, this is the kind of book that will appeal to readers of literary fiction and genre fiction alike. It points out the absurdity of reality television without feeling condescending. As the readers wake up to the realities of a new world, it becomes difficult to put down.” — Leah White, Ela Area Public Library, Lake Zurich, IL

9780385541404_058f9Nine Women, One Dress, Jane L. Rosen (PRH/Doubleday; RH Audio/BOT; OverDrive Sample).

Nine Women, One Dress sends the reader on a journey with many characters and the little black dress of the season. From the soon-retiring dress designer and the first-time runway model, to the retail salespeople and an actor, this book relates how the dress touches and, often profoundly, changes the lives of all. Even though there were many characters in this book, the author immersed the reader into their lives. Romance, humor, and irony spark the plot as the dress travels from one life to another. A charming read!” — Kristin Fields, Farnhamville Public Library, Farnhamville, IA

9780399165214_5f0e8Siracusa, Delia Ephron (PRH/Blue Rider Press; Penguin Audio/BOT; OverDrive Sample).

“Michael and Lizzie are vacationing with another couple and their daughter, named Snow. As the story unfolds, the reader is introduced to infidelities. Ephron does a tremendous job in exposing the frailties of relationships and it feels like being intimate with other people’s problems but without the guilt. Engaging and tough to put down. Great summer read!” — Andrienne Cruz, Azusa City Library, Azusa, CA

Deadline Hollywood reports a film adaptation is in the works.

9781250097910_5b2f2All Is Not Forgotten, Wendy Walker (Macmillan/St. Martin’s Press; Macmillan Audio).

“A dark, twisty, intricately-plotted psychological thriller about a teen girl, assaulted after a party, as she tries to regain her memories of the event after taking a controversial drug that erases traumatic memories. Walker’s many plot and character threads are carefully placed, and she weaves them all together into a satisfying, shattering conclusion. I’m betting we’ll be seeing this title in a LOT of beach bags over the summer.” — Gregg Winsor, Johnson County Library, Roeland Park, KS

It is also an Indie Next pick for July.

The other bookseller picks coming out this are:

9781501121890_f39c7The Trouble with Goats and Sheep, Joanna Cannon (S&S/Scribner; S&S Audio; OverDrive Sample)

“Best friends Grace and Tilly spend England’s sweltering summer of 1976 sleuthing for clues to uncover the reason for their neighbor’s disappearance. They go from house to house, neighbor to neighbor, investigating as only guileless little girls can do. While they’re at it, they also look for god in the most unusual places. As the mystery of the neighborhood is slowly revealed, so are the many secrets behind every door on the avenue. If you loved A Man Called Ove, you will love The Trouble With Goats and Sheep. Funny, quirky and profound!” —Cathy Langer, Tattered Cover Book Store, Denver, CO

9780399575891_ffaf9Pond, Claire-Louise Bennett (PRH/Riverhead Books; OverDrive Sample)

“A brilliant and captivating debut, Bennett’s Pond is a strange, beautifully layered work of fiction, from its quirky and contemplative narrator’s interior life to the vivid and charming descriptions of rural Irish life. Perhaps the most surprising aspect of this book is its warm invitation to celebrate solitude. Bennett writes as if in a lush, landscaped dream, each story chapter going forward, circling back, and ending in the middle of the protagonist’s musings upon her everyday experiences. Pond is utterly original, by turns hilarious and poignant, a refreshing and simply delightful read.” —Angela Spring, Politics & Prose, Washington, DC

9780393241730_bb5c4Miss Jane, Brad Watson (Norton).

“At first, I was uncomfortable reading about the life Jane Chisolm has to lead due to a genital birth defect and assumed that I would be sad for her throughout the book, but this is so beautifully written and unsentimental in its depiction of Jane’s quiet strength and courageous acceptance of her life that I fell in love with her quite quickly. While all the supporting characters have their own peculiarities, they are tender and endearing to Jane and that helped me to understand how she endured and was loved so fully. Everyone should read this extraordinary book and feel, as I did, the joy of this remarkable woman.” —Nancy Banks, City Stacks Books and Coffee, Denver, CO

9780385541299_0470dThe Heavenly Table, Donald Ray Pollock (PRH/Doubleday; RH Audio/BOT).

“After murdering the tyrannical owner of the land they farmed on the Georgia/Alabama border, three brothers make a desperate run for Canada and manage, along the way, to acquire national reputations as the kind of ruthless outlaws who are immortalized in dime store novels. This is a rollicking and ribald adventure story, populated with shady characters and told in vivid, sparkling prose reminiscent of Patrick DeWitt’s The Sisters Brothers — and there is hardly a higher compliment.” —Alden Graves, Northshire Bookstore, Manchester Center, VT

Selecting it for their summer reading list, the Chicago Tribune said, it “has been likened to the work of Flannery O’Connor, Cormac McCarthy and the Coen Brothers.”


9780399554902_c56cdThe big tie-in news comes a bit late in the day as a key tie-in for The Secret Life of Pets is hitting shelves after the movie opens on July 9 (others came out in May).

The Secret Life of Pets: The Deluxe Junior Novelization (Secret Life of Pets), David Lewman (PRH/Random House – also in a paperback, non-deluxe version) pubs this week.

The animated film is getting flat reviews, as we wrote, with the Den of Geek offering a typical reaction, “I’m sure it’ll make lots and lots of money … I’m less sure that lots and lots of people will love it.”

9780142422830_24c5bNerve Movie Tie-In, Jeanne Ryan (PRH/Speak; Blackstone Audio; OverDrive Sample).

The debut YA SF thriller, about an online, voyeuristic, version of truth or dare was called a page-turner by  Kirkus, if beholden to books like The Hunger Games.

The film adaptation stars Emma Roberts, Dave Franco and Juliette Lewis and opens July 27.

9781250115959_eb58eFlorence Foster Jenkins: The Inspiring True Story of the World’s Worst Singer, Nicholas Martin and Jasper Rees (Macmillan/St. Martin’s Griffin).

Starring Meryl Streep and Hugh Grant, this bio-pic about a real life socialite who could not sing a note opens in the US on Aug. 12.

It has already aired in the UK where it got strong reviews. The Guardian gave it 4 out of 5 stars, saying it is a “very likable, frequently hilarious, yet still poignant tragi-comedy.” The Telegraph (pre-Brexit) agrees, giving it the same star rating and saying, it feels like “a classic postwar studio comedy – a pillowy paean to silliness, and the perfect antidote for sobering times.”

9781484741238_4a40aLife, Animated: A Story of Sidekicks, Heroes, and Autism, Ron Suskind (Hachette/Kingswell) is also out behind its movie release date.

As we reported in an earlier Hitting Screens round-up, the Sundance award-winning documentary following the life of Owen Suskind (son of author Ron Suskind) opened over the July 4th holiday.

It got great early reviews with Variety calling it “captivating” and The Hollywood Reporter saying it is “radiant.” Later reviews were still strongly positive but less glowing.

For our full list of upcoming adaptations, download our Books to Movies and TV and link to our listing of tie-ins.

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