Archive for the ‘LibraryReads’ Category

Top LibraryReads March Pick:

Thursday, February 11th, 2016

9780812993103_f08deThe #1 pick on the just-released LibraryReads list for March is The Summer Before the War, Helen Simonson (PRH/Random House; Random House Audio; BOT). This is only Simonson’s second novel; her first was the bestselling Major Pettigrew’s Last Stand.

Paulette Brooks of Elm Grove Public Library, Elm Grove, WI says the following in her annotation:

“Fans of Simonson’s Major Pettigrew’s Last Stand have reason to rejoice. She has created another engaging novel full of winsome characters, this time set during the summer before the outbreak of World War I. Follow the story of headstrong, independent Beatrice Nash and kind but stuffy surgeon-in-training Hugh Grange along with his formidable Aunt Agatha. Make a cup of tea and prepare to savor every page!”

9780399169496_dec56Another fan-favorite author, Lyndsay Faye, makes the list with Jane Steele (PRH/Putnam; BOT), an historical crime novel using Charlotte Brontë’s
Jane Eyre as a launching pad.

Abbey Stroop of Herrick District Library, Holland,
MI describes it:

Jane Steele is a great read for lovers of Victorian literature who especially love their characters to have a lot of pluck! Jane Steele is the adventurous, irreverent, foul-mouthed broad that I so often loved about Jane Eyre, but in more wily circumstances. Remember that fabulous scene in Jane Eyre when she stands up to her aunt for the first time, and how you wanted to stand up from your comfy reading chair and cheer for her? Imagine an entire book just of those sorts of scenes. Absolutely fabulous fun!”

9781451686630_0a0baLisa Lutz, who grabbed readers with her Spellman Files books takes a turn to thrillers, in The Passenger (Simon & Schuster).

Beth DeGeer of Bartlesville Public Library, Bartlesville, OK writes:

“This is a compulsively readable story of a young woman who has to keep switching identities and stay on the run. Is she a reliable narrator or not? What was the original event that sent her on the run? There is a lot of action and suspense as she tries to survive and evade the law while trying to keep her moral center intact. Unlike Lutz’s Spellman books, this reads more like a Charles Portis road novel, though considerably more serious and dangerous. Highly recommended.”

9781616205027_7fcfeNovelist Lee Smith takes a turn to nonfiction in
her memoir Dimestore: A Writer’s Life (Workman/Algonquin Books).

Lois Gross, Hoboken Public Library, Hoboken, NJ writes:

“Evenly divided between a book about Smith’s process and her life, first as a Southern mountain child and, later, as the parent of a schizophrenic child, this book is interesting and compelling. Despite being surrounded by loving family and being blessed with an active imagination, Lee copes with a mentally ill mother. Later, her son’s mental illness and early death brings her to the breaking point but she is saved by her writing. This is a read-alike for Karr’s The Liars Club. It desperately needs a cinematic translation for it’s elegant and evocative writing.”

Two debuts make the list, The Nest, Cynthia D’Aprix Sweeney (Harper/Ecco; HarperAudio) and The Madwoman Upstairs, Catherine Lowell (S&S/Touchstone; Blackstone Audio).

9780062414212_2b722 Mary Kinser of Whatcom County Library System, Bellingham, WA says the following about Sweeney’s debut, which is also a top 15 Most Anticipated title:

“If you think your family is dysfunctional, move over, because here come the Plumbs. Suddenly faced with the dismantling of the nest egg they’ve counted on to solve their financial woes, the four Plumb siblings have to grow up, and fast. But though they all do some terrible things in the name of ambition, there’s something lovable about the Plumbs. You can’t fail to be moved by the beating heart of this novel, which seems to say that family, for good or ill, unites us all.”

9781501124211_01013Kristen McCallum, Algonquin Area Public Library, Algonquin, IL offers this recommendation for The Madwoman Upstairs, another riff on Jane Eyre:

“Meet Samantha Whipple, a descendant of the Bronte family, who arrives at Oxford to study literature, as her father did before her. She receives a copy of Jane Eyre – a volume that she thought was destroyed in the fire that took her father’s life. When a second Bronte novel belonging to her father turns up, she is convinced he has staged an elaborate treasure hunt for her promised inheritance. Enlisting the help of her sexy, young professor, Samantha sets out on a quest to find buried treasure and learns the value of friendship and courage along the way.”

The full list of suggestions is available beginning today.

Our GalleyChatters were also fans of many of these books (see here, here, and here).

SALT TO THE SEA Is LibraryReads #1 Pick

Thursday, January 7th, 2016

9780399160301_6d8b1Published as a young adult title,  Salt to the Sea by Ruta Sepetys, (Penguin Young Readers/Philomel; Listening Library; OverDrive Sample) crosses over to adult as the #1 LibraryReads selection of the top ten titles for February.

Jennifer Asimakopoulos, Indian Prairie Public Library, Darien, IL provides the annotation:

“Titanic. Lusitania. Wilhelm Gustloff. All major maritime disasters, yet the last is virtually unknown. Ruta Sepetys changes that in her gripping historical novel. Told in short snippets, Salt to the Sea rotates between four narrators attempting to escape various tragedies in 1945 Europe. Powerful and haunting, heartbreaking and hopeful–a must read.”

Also on the list are several debuts, including two that have been featured on our Penguin Debut Authors program, First Flights.

Black Rabbit Hall, Eve Chase, (PRH/Putnam; BOT and Penguin Audio) — see chat archive here

“Young Amber Alton and her family adore Black Rabbit Hall, and the joy and peace it brings to them all. That is, until a tragic accident changes everything. Three decades later, Lorna decides her wedding must be celebrated at the crumbling hall. As the book moves between these two time periods, secrets slowly unfold. Perfectly twisty with interesting characters and a compelling story that kept me up too late.” — Deborah Margeson, Douglas County Libraries, Parker, CO

13 Ways of Looking at a Fat Girl,  Mona Awad, (PRH/ Penguin Pbk Original)  — see chat archive here

“Everyone loves Lizzie–she is the confidant, the late night go-to, and she is always there and hungry for attention. Lizzie becomes even more obsessed and needy when she no longer feels insecure about being overweight and it becomes painfully obvious that she will always feel bad about herself. It is a candid and sad look at how we mistreat people with different body types.” — Kimberly McGee, Lake Travis Community Library, Austin, TX

January Peer Picks

Thursday, December 10th, 2015

   9781400067695_fb962   9781492623441_55cfe

Topping the LibraryReads list for January, released today, is a book that has been popular on our GalleyChats, Elizabeth Strout’s latest, My Name Is Lucy Barton, (PRH/ Random House; Jan 12). Catherine Coyne, Mansfield Public Library, Mansfield, MA writes the annotation,

Set in the mid-1980s, Lucy Barton, hospitalized for nine weeks, is surprised when her estranged mother shows up at her bedside. Her mother talks of local gossip, but underneath the banalities, Lucy senses the love that cannot be expressed. This is the story that Lucy must write about, the one story that has shaped her entire life. A beautiful lyrical story of a mother and daughter and the love they share.

It is also picked by booksellers for the Indie Next January list. the recommendation credits Strout with “the incredible ability to take ordinary, even mundane situations and use them to make acute observations on the human condition.”

Topping the Indie Next list is a book that was heavily promoted at BEA, The Readers of Broken Wheel Recommend by Katarina Bivald (Sourcebooks Landmark; Jan 19). Also on the LibraryReads list, it is describes by Barbara Clark-Greene, Groton Public Library, Groton, CT:

Sara arrives in the small town of Broken Wheel to visit her pen pal Amy, only to discover Amy has just died. The tale of how she brings the love of books and reading that she shared with Amy to the residents of Broken Wheel is just a lovely read. Any book lover will enjoy Sara’s story and that of the friends she makes in Broken Wheel. If ever a town needed a bookstore, it is Broken Wheel; the healing power of books and reading is made evident by this heartwarming book.

There’s little crossover between the rest of  the titles on the lists, giving readers advisors 29 titles to know and recommend (check for digital galleys on Edelweiss and NetGalley).

THE JAPANESE LOVER Tops Nov. LibraryReads List

Thursday, October 8th, 2015

9781501116971_396caA year after receiving the Medal of Freedom from President Obama and after changing publishing houses, Isabel Allende has published what looks to be her next big book, The Japanese Lover (S&S/Atria Books; S&S Audio). Both ibrarians and booksellers have embraced it, making it the #1 LibraryReads pick for November as well as an Indie Next pick.

Ellen Firer, Merrick Library, Merrick, NY says:

“Irina is a young Moldavian immigrant with a troubled past. She works at an assisted living home where she meets Alma, a Holocaust survivor. Alma falls in love with Ichi, a young Japanese gardener, who survived Topaz, the Japanese internment camp. Despite man’s inhumanity to man, love, art and beauty can exist, as evidenced in their beautiful love story.”

9781101874141_9e7a9The Improbability of Love by Hannah Rothschild (RH/Knopf), a debut novel by one of the richest and most powerful women in the art world is also a LibraryReads pick. It’s been translated into six languages and a battle broke out for film rights.

Heather Bistyga, Anderson County Library, Anderson, South Carolina offers this annotation:

“The engaging, totally unexpected story of Annie, a lonely young woman who wanders into a junk shop and buys a painting. The painting turns out to have a long and storied past, with powerful people searching high and low for it. Unpredictable and fascinating; I loved the peek into the cutthroat art world and watching Annie blossom as she discovers her true calling.”

9780385539463_85083Nonfiction breaks onto the list with Little Victories: Perfect Rules for Imperfect Living by Jason Gay (RH/Doubleday; Random House Audio), a mix of essays, humor, and rules for living.

Lindley Homol, Chesterfield County Public Library, Chesterfield, VA says:

“This was a quick, enjoyable read that offers a refreshing perspective on some of the trivialities we all find ourselves caught up in. I enjoyed the tone and humor throughout. A standout for me was Gay’s list of recommendations for his child’s future baseball team. His open letter to this imagined future team envisions a team that can just let kids be kids. My only disappointment with this book was that there wasn’t more of it–it seemed to end all too soon.”

9781455536269_1abf2Riveting suspense also gets librarian attention, with the latest in the Agent Pendergast series, Crimson Shore by Douglas Preston & Lincoln Child (Hachette/Grand Central; Grand Central Audio).

Shari Brophy, Timberland Regional Library, Tumwater, WA offers:

“In the latest installment in the Special Agent Pendergast series, Pendergast and Constance Greene investigate a theft of a wine cellar in an ancient village on the coast north of Salem, only to discover during their investigation the entombed remains of a tortured man.”I always thoroughly enjoy the Pendergast novels, and the interaction between Pendergast and Constance in this book was very intriguing.”

9781616203573_956c7The Muralist by B. A. Shapiro (Workman/Algonquin; HighBridge Audio), another novel based in the art world, tops the Indie Next List and is also a LibraryReads pick.

Amanda Monson, Bartow County Library System, Cartersville, GA says:

“This art-filled story following the young life and disappearance of Alizee Benoit is heartbreaking and thoughtful. Not only does the novel give an entertaining education on the WPA and abstract artists, but it also gives eerily relevant commentary on refugees and the cold-heartedness of government. Alizee’s story will pull you along as you try to grasp how this bright light of the art community vanished.”

9780399171314_d699d9781501107832_b8888Other overlapping titles between librarians and booksellers include Along the Infinite Sea by Beatriz Williams (PRH/G.P. Putnam’s Sons; Penguin Audio)

and Dear Mr. You by Mary-Louise Parker (S&S/Scribner; S&S Audio).

Beth Mills, New Rochelle Public Library, New Rochelle, NY says of Williams’s novel:

“When Pepper Schuyler–on the run from a powerful politician and desperate to protect her unborn child–sells her newly restored classic car to an enigmatic and very wealthy woman, she not only finds unexpected refuge but also tantalizing hints of a mystery. With vivid European settings, colorful characters and intricate plotting that skillfully weaves past and present together, Along the Infinite Sea is a treat for fans of Beatriz Williams.”

PJ Gardiner, Wake County Public Libraries, Raleigh, NC offers the following about actress Parker’s debut:

“Parker has created a unique and poetic memoir through a series of letters–some of appreciation, some of apology, some simply of acknowledgement–to the men in her life. Ranging from a taxi driver to a grandfather she never knew, each man has left an imprint and shaped her into the person she has become. Full of feeling, growth, and self-discovery, Parker’s book has left me longing to write my own letters.”

9780374290252_a55dcScience Fiction and Mystery round out the remaining choices as well as a new take on fairy tales, A Wild Swan: And Other Tales by Michael Cunningham, illustrated by Yuko Shimizu (Macmillan/FSG; Macmillan Audio).

CITY ON FIRE Tops October’s LibraryReads List

Thursday, September 10th, 2015

LibraryReads FavoriteScreen Shot 2015-09-09 at 12.23.01 PMMany have wondered if readers will be put off by the length of Garth Risk Hallberg’s City on Fire (RH/Knopf; Random House Audio; Oct. 13). Just shy of 1,000-pages long, the novel was the focus of a 2-day bidding war in 2013, with publisher Knopf anteing up nearly 2 million dollars for the rights to publish it. Hollywood was high on it, too. Producer Scott Rudin picked up the movie rights before the book deal was completed. Unsurprisingly, Knopf promoted the book heavily at this year’s BEA.

Librarians have embraced it, making it the number one October LibraryReads pick and so have booksellers, making it an October Indie Next pick.

Racine Zackula, Wichita Public Library, describes it:

“WOW! An excellently executed work with intricate plot lines and fascinating characters. It’s a story of how the stories of many different people of New York City in the late seventies crash into each other like waves on rocks. This work may encapsulate the whole of New York City, as it has wealth, love, filth, passion, aimless angst, and the myriad of other aspects of humanity swirling in that amazing city.”

After YouSequels to beloved books are often viewed with trepidation, but Jojo Moyes scores with librarians with After You (Penguin/Pamela Dorman; Penguin Audio), the followup to her beloved Me Before You. The movie adaptation of the first book is set for release next year, starring Emilia Clarke (Game of Thrones) and Sam Claflin (The Hunger Games). Directed by Thea Sharrock, this will be her first feature film, after directing the BBC miniseries The Hollow Crown and Call The Midwife. as well as several theatrical productions.

Says Joseph Jones, Cuyahoga County Public Library, Cleveland, OH:

“I loved Me Before You and thought it ended in the perfect place, but any doubts I had about continuing the story were quickly erased when I started this sequel. Jojo Moyes is a master at tugging on your heartstrings. I laughed, I cried, and I nearly threw my Kindle against the wall at one point. Give this to anyone in your life who has experienced a tragic loss. With a box of tissues.”

Screen Shot 2015-09-09 at 12.24.50 PMWelcome to Night Vale (Harper Perennial; HarperAudio; Oct. 20) by Joseph Fink and Jeffrey Cranor also makes the LibraryReads list. An extension of the podcast of the same name, a tag line of the audio version is “Turn on your radio and hide.”

Librarians are featured in the podcast and the authors were featured at this year’s ALA.

Debra Franklin, York County Public Library, Rock Hill, SC says:

“This is classic Night Vale in written form. It’s an absolute must for Night Vale fans, and will possibly provide an introduction for those who haven’t found this snarky little podcast yet.”

Screen Shot 2015-09-09 at 12.26.00 PMAlso featured at ALA, in the Opening General session, was Roberta Kaplan co-author with Lisa Dickey of  Then Comes Marriage: United States v. Windsor and the Defeat of DOMA (W.W. Norton; Oct. 5).

Darren Nelson, Sno-Isle Libraries, Marysville, WA, says of this timely title:

“The attorney who argued before the Supreme Court for the plaintiff in this landmark case gives the story behind the headlines. Kaplan integrates personal narrative with legal strategy throughout, combining her own struggles with a fascinating look at the brave and unconventional life led by her client. This is a heartwarming and inspiring account of one widow’s pursuit of justice and dignity.”

Screen Shot 2015-09-09 at 12.30.05 PMAnother nonfiction title on the list is We Were Brothers: A Memoir (Algonquin; Oct. 20) by Barry Moser. He spoke at the AAP Librarians lunch at BEA and is the well-known illustrator who runs Pennyroyal Press.

PJ Gardiner, Wake County Public Libraries, Raleigh, NC says:

“Moser’s deeply personal memoir of his volatile relationship with his brother in the segregated south is thoughtful and beautifully written. Strong differences of opinions divided the brothers. Late in life, reconciliation came, but only after years of heartache. There is much to ponder from this work, which is timely given current racial tensions.”

New and highly anticipated novels by Jojo Moyes, Elizabeth George, David Mitchell, Margaret Atwood, and Geraldine Brooks round out the picks.

THE ART OF CRASH LANDING Tops September LibraryReads List

Thursday, August 13th, 2015

Screen Shot 2015-08-12 at 1.30.45 PMThe debut novel The Art of Crash Landing by Melissa DeCarlo (Harper Paperbacks; HarperCollins Publishers and Blackstone Audio) tops the September LibraryReads List.

Patricia Kline-Millard (Bedford Public Library, Bedford, NH) offers this annotation of the paperback original:

“At once tragic and hilarious, this book is a roller coaster of a read. You’ll find yourself rooting for the snarky and impulsive but ultimately lovable Mattie. At the heart of this tale is a beautifully unraveled mystery that has led Mattie to her current circumstances, ultimately bringing her to her first real home.”

Three other debuts also make the list. Bill Clegg’s buzzy Did You Ever Have a Family (S&S/Gallery/Scout Press; S&S Audio), The Gates of Evangeline by Hester Young (Penguin/Putnam), and Girl Waits With Gun by Amy Stewart (HMH; Recorded Books).

This is Stewart’s fiction debut, after writing popular nonfiction such as The Drunken Botanist. Maggie Holmes (Richards Memorial Library, North Attleboro, MA ) has this to say of Stewart’s move to novels:

Screen Shot 2015-08-12 at 1.32.51 PM“When the Kopp sisters and their buggy are injured by Henry Kaufmann’s car, Constance Kopp at first just wants him to pay the damages. As she pursues justice, she meets another of Kaufmann’s victims, the young woman Lucy. Stewart creates fully developed characters, including the heroine, Constance, who is fiercely independent as she faces down her fears. The time period and setting are important parts of the story as well, providing a glimpse of 1914 New Jersey.”

Screen Shot 2015-08-12 at 1.33.55 PM  Screen Shot 2015-08-13 at 10.17.02 AM  Screen Shot 2015-08-12 at 1.35.39 PM

More well-known names such as Lee Child, Lauren Groff, and Jonathan Evison also appear, with Arleen Talley (Anne Arundel County Public Library Foundation, Annapolis, MD) offering this annotation of Evison’s This Is Your Life, Harriet Chance! (Algonquin; HighBridge Audio).

“Harriet Chance receives word that her recently deceased husband, Bernard, has won an Alaskan cruise. Deciding to go on the trip, she is given a letter from her close friend Mildred, with instructions not to open it until she is on the cruise. The contents of this letter shatter Harriet and she begins to reevaluate her life and her relationships.”

Screen Shot 2015-08-13 at 10.15.34 AMThe September Indie Next list is also available and Clegg’s Did You Ever Have a Family is tops for the month among booksellers.

Other LibraryReads picks that overlap with the Indie list include Stewart’s Girl Waits With Gun, Charles Belfoure’s House of Thieves (Sourcebooks Landmark), Young’s The Gates of Evangeline, and Evison’s This Is Your Life, Harriet Chance!

Screen Shot 2015-08-11 at 12.18.09 PMOur recent Crystal Ball pick, In A Dark, Dark Wood (S&S/Galley/Scout Press; S&S Audio; OverDrive Sample), also makes the bookseller’s picks.


BEST BOY Tops LibraryReads
for August

Thursday, July 9th, 2015

best-boyblog-199x300Just released, the LibraryReads picks for August, a list of the  ten titles librarians are most looking forward to sharing with readers next month. Topping the list is Eli Gottlieb’s Best Boy (Norton/Liveright, 8/24):

“What happens when someone on the autism spectrum grows up, and they aren’t a cute little boy anymore? Gottlieb’s novel follows the story of Todd Aaron, a man in his fifties who has spent most of his life a resident of the Payton Living Center. Todd begins to wonder what lies beyond the gates of his institution. A funny and deeply affecting work.” — Elizabeth Olesh, Baldwin Public Library, Baldwin, NY

Check Edelweiss and NetGalley for digital ARC’s. They are generally available until publication day.

Don’t forget to nominate your favorite upcoming titles, with publication dates of September or later (how-to specifics here).


LibraryReads also provides FREE downloadable marketing materials so you can easily:

• Post online banner ads on your library’s website

• Include LibraryReads-recommended titles in your library’s newsletter

• Print copies of the monthly flyer to post on your community bulletin board and have available as handouts

#1 May LibraryReads Title
to Big Screen

Tuesday, June 9th, 2015

Is Hollywood taking note of the LibraryReads picks?

Warner Bros. has just won a bidding war for the rights to the LibraryReads #1 Pick for May, Naomi Novik’s Uprooted (RH/Del Rey; OverDrive Sample). Aaccording to The Hollywood Reporter. Ellen DeGeneres will produce. She currently has six TV shows in production, “making this her rare foray into features.”

Screen Shot 2015-04-14 at 12.12.50 PMLucy Lockley of St. Charles City-County Library (MO) offers this description of the story:

“A young girl is unexpectedly uprooted from her family and becomes involved in a centuries-old battle with The Wood, a malevolent entity which destroys anyone it touches. Fast-paced, with magic, mystery and romance, Novik’s stand-alone novel is a fairy tale for adults.”

LibraryReads June Treats

Friday, May 8th, 2015

800-grapesJust released, the LibraryReads picks for June, a list of the  ten titles librarians are most looking forward to sharing with readers next month. Topping the list, a book that may be the author’s breakout, Eight Hundred Grapes (Simon & Schuster; June 2; OverDrive Sample) by Laura Dave.

It was also a hit with the librarians on GalleyChat back in February. Some comparing author Laura Dave to Emily Giffin and Jennifer Weiner.

LibraryReads recommendation:

Take your time and savor the family dynamics. Enjoy the romantic twists in this tale of a career-minded young woman circling back to her roots at a California winery. The appeal is broader than that of a romance since it delves into the complexities of various relationships– parent to parent, parents and children, even winery and owner.This is an excellent summer read! — Joan Hipp, Florham Park Public Library, Florham Park, NJ

Screen Shot 2015-05-06 at 9.07.20 PMAnnie Barrows, who will speak at the AAP/LibraryReads lunch at BEA, takes the no. 2 spot for The Truth According to Us (RH/The Dial Press; June 9; RH and BOT Audio; OverDrive Sample).

It is 1938 in a rural West Virginia town and a young woman arrives to write the town’s history. Layla doesn’t really know what to expect from the town, and the town doesn’t know what to make of her. This is the heart of the South, the soul of small towns, where everyone looks out for you and knows your history. Sweet story tailor-made for fans of Billie Letts, Fannie Flagg, Pat Conroy and Harper Lee. — Kimberly McGee, Lake Travis Community Library, Austin, TX

Screen Shot 2015-05-06 at 9.08.36 PMTwo other hot picks from previous GalleyChats also make this month’s list. The Book of Speculation by Erika Swyler Screen Shot 2015-05-06 at 9.09.31 PM(Macmillan/St. Martin’s; June 23;Macmillan Audio; OverDrive Sample) was a hit in March while The Little Paris Bookshop by Nina George (RH/Crown; June 23; Random House Audio; OverDrive Sample) was a favorite in April.

Screen Shot 2015-05-06 at 9.10.22 PMErika Johansen returns with The Invasion of the Tearling (Harper; June 9; HarperCollins and Blackstone Audio; OverDrive Sample), and is joined by other big names including Judy Blume and Elin Hilderbrand.

Screen Shot 2015-05-06 at 9.11.08 PMIn nonfiction, pirates win the day with Robert Kurson’s Pirate Hunters: Treasure, Obsession, and the Search for a Legendary Pirate Ship (Random House; June 16; RH and BOT Audio; OverDrive Sample) rounding off the picks.

Screen Shot 2015-05-06 at 9.12.17 PMThe Indie Next titles have also been announced, with Kent Haruf’s Our Souls at Night (RH/Knopf; May 26; RH and BOT Audio; OverDrive Sample) taking the top spot.

Johansen and Barrows get nods from the booksellers at IndieBound as well.

Rachel Joyce Tops March LibraryReads

Friday, February 13th, 2015

9780812996678_a6c37  9781612194424_d934f

The top title on the March LibraryReads list of ten titles published this month that library staff love, seconds that emotion. The Love Song of Miss Queenie Hennessy by Rachel Joyce, (Random House; RH Audio. March 3) is a “companion novel” to  Joyce’s surprise best seller, The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry.

Miss Queenie Hennessy, who we met in Joyce’s first book, is in a hospice ruminating over her abundant life experiences. I loved the poignant passages and wise words peppered throughout. Readers of The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry will enjoy this book. There’s no fast-paced plot or exciting twists–it’s just a simple, sweet story of a life well-lived.
Andrienne Cruz, Azusa City Library, Azusa, CA

Also on the list is a title by Lynne Truss, whose book on grammar, Eats Shoots & Leaves, was another surprise best seller. Cat Out of Hell, (Melville House, March 3) is a novel that the author says is so “very quirky (and very British),” that getting an American publisher for it was “quite a surprise.” She should be even more surprised by this reception.

Cats don’t live nine lives. They survive eight deaths. There’s something special about Roger, the cat, and it’s not that he can talk. Truss spins readers through a hauntingly, portentous tale. When my cat’s tail thrums, I’ll forever wonder what devilment will follow.
Ann Williams, Tippecanoe County Public Library, Lafayette, IN

LibraryReads for February:
Anne Tyler is #1

Friday, January 9th, 2015

Topping the February LibraryReads list of the month’s top 10 titles, chosen by library staff from across the country, is Anne Tyler’s latest novel,  A Spool of Blue Thread, (Knopf; RH Audio; 2/10).

Also on the list is GalleyChat favorite, A Touch of Stardust by Kate Alcott (RH/Doubleday; RH Audio; 2/17), a novel that features real-life screwball comedian, Carole Lombard, and My Sunshine Away by M.O. Walsh, (Penguin/Putnam; Penguin Audio; 2/10), also a much-discussed title on GalleyChat, (join us for a chat with the author on Jan. 21).

Check Edelweiss and NetGalley for digital ARC’s. They are generally available until publication day.

And don’t forget to nominate your favorite upcoming titles, with publication dates of March or later (how-to specifics here).

LibraryReads also provides FREE downloadable marketing materials so you can easily:


• Post online banner ads on your library’s website

• Include LibraryReads-recommended titles in your library’s newsletter

• Print copies of the monthly flyer to post on your community bulletin board and have available as handouts

• Print copies of the horizontal banner for patrons to use as bookmarks

LibraryReads, January:
Flavia is #1

Friday, December 12th, 2014

The first LibraryReads list of the new year has just been released.

9780345539939_6fe24The number one pick is the most recent Flavia de Luce novel, As Chimney Sweepers Come
to Dust, Alan Bradley, (RH/Delacorte; BOT Audio — go behind the scenes of the audio recording here).

Also on the list of ten titles are two follow ups to book that have been popular with librarians, The Rosie Effect by Graeme Simsion (S&S; S&S Audio) and Golden Son: Book II of the Red Rising Trilogy by Pierce Brown, (RH/Del Rey; Thorndike; Recorded Books) and a debut that has been heavily buzzed on EarlyWord‘s GalleyChat, The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins (Penguin/Riverhead; Penguin Audio).

LibraryReads Top Ten Favorites

Friday, November 14th, 2014

The top ten titles that public library staff most enjoyed recommending in 2014 have been announced. As part of LibraryReads first-year celebration, over a thousand people voted on their favorite LibraryReads’s picks from the monthly lists beginning with the first, September, 2013.

The top favorte is The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry, by Gabrielle Zevin (the trade paperback cover is on the right, below. The first person to spot the sly reference in the shop window, by noting it in the comments section, wins a copy of the book).

9781616203214_2a337  life-firky

“A wide range of library staff has signed on with LibraryReads, from all over the country, and from public libraries of all sizes,” says Stephanie Anderson, Head of Reader Services at Darien Library in CT, on behalf of the LibraryReads Steering Committee. “Library staff are tastemakers in their communities, and this list showcases the broad and brio-filled scope of their reading enthusiasm.”

The full list, in order of most votes received, is:

The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry, by Gabrielle Zevin, (Workman/Algonquin, April; Highbridge Audio; Thorndike;  Trade pbk, 12/2/14).

The Rosie Project, by Graeme Simsion (Simon & Schuster, Oct., 2013; S&S Audio; Trade pbk, 6/3/14) — sequel, The Rosie Effect, coming 12/30.

All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr (S&S/Scribner, May 2014; Audio exclusive from Midwest Tape),

Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell, (Macmillan/St. Martin’s Griffin, July; Listening Library)

The Goldfinch, by Donna Tartt (Hachette/Little, Brown, Oct, 2013; Hachette AudioBlackstone Audio; Thorndike)

We Were Liars, by E. Lockhart, Penguin YR/Delacorte Press, May; Listening Library)

Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel, (RH/Knopf, Sept., 2014; RH Audio; Thorndike, Dec. 10)

One Plus One by Jojo Moyes, (Viking/Pamela Dorman, June; Recorded Books; Thorndike)

Landline, by Rainbow Rowell (Macmillan/St. Martin’s, July; Macmillan Audio; Thorndike)

Longbourn, by Jo Baker (RH/Knopf, Oct, 2013; RH Audio; RH Large Print; trade pbk, 6/17/14)

The fully annotated list will be posted at on December 1st.

Remember to nominate your favorite upcoming titles for LibraryReads. You can nominate titles at any time, but the deadline for the January list (which includes December as well as January titles) is Nov. 20.

Get Your LibraryReads Picks!

Monday, July 14th, 2014

LibraryReads FavoriteLibraryReads FavoriteLibraryReads FavoriteLibraryReads FavoriteLibraryReads Favorite9781476749785_a7da7    LibraryReads Favorite

Today’s release of the LibraryReads list of the ten books librarians love the most for the month of August, is a reminder to get your nominations in for the upcoming months (you can nominate titles to be published from September on. Nominations close on the first of each month for titles published in that month —more how-to specifics here).

The new list offers many titles that provide an answer to the eternal question, “What’s coming out that’s good?” Many of these titles will be available as eGalleys on Edelweiss and/or NetGalley until their pub dates, so grab them now.

The number one pick is Chelsea Cain’s thriller, One Kick (S&S;
S&S Audio; Wheeler Large Print; eGalley available), the beginning of a new series for Cain (she still plans to continue the popular and scary Gretchen Lowell series, alternating between the two). NBC announced in October that it is developing a series based on the new titles about a woman who, having been abducted herself as a child, works to rescue other kidnapped kids.


Most of the titles come from well-known names, but this list also includes a debut, the historical novel The Miniaturist by Jessie Burton (HarperCollins/Ecco; HarperLuxe; eGalley available) which was featured at the BEA Editor’s buzz Panel. Set in 17th C Amsterdam, it is compared to the best of Sarah Waters and Emma Donoghue.

9781400067244_c6788Also resonating from BEA, Lucky Us by Amy Bloom (Random House; RH Audio, eGalley available on request), who won over the crowd at the  Random House Librarians Breakfast with her tales of growing up in a library (with a very understanding librarian) and her description of the sources for the female friendship at the center of her new book.

The full list offers suggestions for a wide range of tastes, from historical to romance, science fiction, and literary titles.

Also, check our compilation of all the lists since LibraryReads began last September, LibraryReads-All-Lists-Through-Aug-2014, Sort it by category and you’ll have an instant list to use when you’re stuck trying to recommend a recent book in a particular category, or for creating displays.