Archive for the ‘2010 – Fall’ Category


Monday, October 15th, 2012

The already heavy holds on statistician Nate Silver’s book, The Signal and the Noise: Why So Many Predictions Fail-but Some Don’t (Penguin Press) are likely to increase after his appearance on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart on Wednesday.

The Signal and the Noise: Why So Many Predictions Fail-but Some Don’t
Nate Silver
Retail Price:
Hardcover: 544 pages
Publisher: The Penguin Press – (2012-09-27)
9781594204111, 159420411X

UNBROKEN Closer to Screen

Wednesday, March 30th, 2011

Another step has been taken in the often winding road from book to film; screenwriter Richard LaGravenese has been hired to create a script based on Laura Hillenbrand’s bestseller, Unbroken (Random House),  according to Deadline.

This story has had a particularly long history. Universal has been trying to produce a film about the book’s central figure, Louis Zamperini since the ’50′s, when the studio bought Zamperini’s “life rights” as a starring vehicle for Tony Curtis. More recently, Brad Pitt had plans to produce, with Nicolas Cage starring. No news on who may be chosen to star this time around.

FIERY TRIAL on Colbert

Tuesday, February 22nd, 2011

On Thursday, Stephen Colbert grilled historian Eric Foner on the real causes of the Civil War. Foner’s book, The Fiery Trial, was also featured on NPR’s Fresh Air yesterday and is currently at #166 on Amazon sales rankings.


Wednesday, January 19th, 2011

Counting on a Golden Globe win to bring attention to the movie The King’s Speech, which was released in just a few theaters in December, the Weinstein Co. expanded it nationwide last Friday. The gamble paid off. Colin Firth won a Golden Globe for Best Actor and the film did “impressive business” (Hollywood Reporter, 1/17/11) over the MLK weekend.

In the UK, it has been a surprise instant hit, attracting customers who have not been to the cinema in over a decade (Guardian, 1/18/11).

Oscar buzz has been attached to the film for a while; now, see it as the competition for best picture against the Social Network.

The movie is not based on a book, but a book by Logue’s grandson and co-writer, British journalist Peter Conradi, was recently published as a tie-in. USA Today writes about the book’s genesis in the current issue.

Libraries are showing heavy holds on modest orders.


The King’s Speech: How One Man Saved the British Monarchy
Mark Logue, Peter Conradi
Retail Price: $14.95
Paperback: 256 pages
Publisher: Sterling – (2010-11-26)
ISBN / EAN: 140278676X / 9781402786761

Looking Back

Friday, December 31st, 2010

At this time of year, many reviewers reach back to books they overlooked in the Fall crush. USA Today gives a belated push to the fourth title in the Charles Lenox detective series, published in early November, describing author Charles Finch as  “a modern fellow writing about the Victorian period in England…an absolute delight… he and his fictional gentleman protagonist deserve a wider audience.”

A Stranger in Mayfair (Charles Lenox Mysteries)
Charles Finch
Retail Price: $24.99
Hardcover: 320 pages
Publisher: Minotaur Books – (2010-11-09)
ISBN / EAN: 0312625065 / 9780312625061


Thursday, December 30th, 2010

Here’s an irresistible recommendation; People magazine says Claire Dederer’s new memoir about studying yoga while trying to raise two children and keep a marriage together  “…reads like Eat, Pray, Love for hip but harried moms.”

They also give it four of a possible four stars and designate it a People Pick in the new issue, dated Jan. 10. For other titles reviewed in that issue, check our PEOPLE Book Reviews Archive.

Poser: My Life in Twenty-three Yoga Poses
Claire Dederer
Retail Price: $26.00
Hardcover: 352 pages
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux – (2010-12-21)
ISBN / EAN: 0374236445 / 9780374236441

Blackstone Audio, 9781441781505

Geritol for Tired Book Groups

Tuesday, December 28th, 2010

USA Today ‘s book review editor Dierdre Donahue proclaims, “Debut Heartbroke Bay is a golden chance for discussion,” and calls the trade paperback original “literary Geritol” for tired book groups. Based on a true story, this debut by a pseudonymous author came out in early November. It received some strong prepub reviews, but no coverage in the consumer media.

Heartbroke Bay
Lynn D’urso
Retail Price: $15.00
Paperback: 320 pages
Publisher: Berkley Trade – (2010-11-02)
ISBN / EAN: 0425236803 / 9780425236802


Thursday, December 23rd, 2010

Word of mouth must be working for Laura Hillenbrand’s Unbroken. Let us know, in comments below, what your readers are saying. Are the excruciating descriptions putting them off, or are they loving the ultimate triumph (a subject we explored in an earlier post)?

Unbroken is now at #3, from #5 last week, on USA Today‘s best seller list, making it the second best selling nonfiction title after George Bush’s Decision Points.

Holds in libraries are growing. Libraries have increased their copies by as much as ten times the initial order, to try to keep up with demand.

Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption
Laura Hillenbrand
Retail Price: $27.00
Hardcover: 496 pages
Publisher: Random House – (2010-11-16)
ISBN / EAN: 1400064163 / 9781400064168

RH Large Print; 9780375435010
RH Audio; 9780739319697


Tuesday, December 21st, 2010

Patrick Anderson, mystery and thriller reviewer for the Washington Post, enthuses,

Peter James’s novels about Detective Superintendent Roy Grace have been bestsellers in England but have had little impact in this country. That could change with the publication here of the sixth in the series, Dead Like You. It’s a remarkably inventive story of sexual obsession, possibly the most engrossing thriller since Thomas Harris’s The Silence of the Lambs.

Anderson is right about James being big in the UK — Dead Like You went right to #1 on London’s Sunday Times best seller list in its first week of publication and enjoyed extensive review coverage there.

Dead Like You (Detective Superintendent Roy Grace)
Peter James
Retail Price: $25.99
Hardcover: 560 pages
Publisher: Minotaur Books – (2010-11-23)
ISBN / EAN: 0312642822 / 9780312642822

NBA Winner Profiled

Thursday, December 16th, 2010

Nearly a month after her book was named the winner of the National Book Award, Jaimy Gordon is profiled in the New York Times. It’s just as well that media attention is coming late to Lord of Misrule, since the publisher, McPherson, has struggled to get copies into the pipeline.

McPherson is not only a small press, it’s tiny; a one-man operation, with an owner that is, as the NYT puts it, “…the kind of publisher who sometimes seems more concerned with how his books look than how they sell. Lord of Misrule, for example, has a full cloth cover and a stitched binding, which is practically unheard of these days.”

The paperback, however, will be coming from a much larger publisher. It was acquired by Knopf’s Vintage division along with the rights to Gordon’s next hardcover to be published by Knopf/Pantheon. No news yet on when it will appear.

Lord of Misrule
Jaimy Gordon
Retail Price: $25.00
Hardcover: 296 pages
Publisher: McPherson – (2010-11-15)
ISBN / EAN: 0929701836 / 9780929701837


Tuesday, December 14th, 2010

Who would have thought that a book about the 400-year-old history of ballet would crack Amazon’s Top 25? Apollo’s Angels, by Jennifer Homans is now at #23, after an interview with the author on NPR’s Fresh Air last night (it was also recently featured on the cover of the NYT BR, which also named it one of the Top 10 Best Books of 2010).

As with ballet itself, it may all be in the timing. As Terry Gross points out,

It’s kind of ballet season, with lots of companies perfoming the Nutcracker for the holidays and with the new film Black Swan, a psychological thriller, about a ballerina [played by Natalie Portman] preparing for her leading role in Swan Lake.

But, says Gross, you don’t need to be interested in ballet, to be fascinated by Apollo’s Angels…it’s rich with history about class structure, gender, costume, shifting images of the ideal body and ideas of what the body is physically capable of.”

Apollo’s Angels: A History of Ballet
Jennifer Homans
Retail Price: $35.00
Hardcover: 672 pages
Publisher: Random House – (2010-11-02)
ISBN / EAN: 1400060605 / 9781400060603


Monday, December 13th, 2010

On several best books lists, The Gun by C.J. Chivers, was featured on NPR’s All Things Considered last night. According to the author, a foreign correspondent for the NY Times, the AK-47, which American military leaders considered too small and not powerful enough for their troops, has changed the nature of war, making certain conflicts longer and bloodier.

The Gun
C. J. Chivers
Retail Price: $28.00
Hardcover: 496 pages
Publisher: Simon & Schuster – (2010-10-12)
ISBN / EAN: 0743270762 / 9780743270762

Coming Next Week

Friday, December 10th, 2010

It’s a slow week for book releases. During this big shopping season, publishers assume that booksellers are out front selling, rather than unpacking new shipments from publishers.

As a result, major releases are slim next week and are all for younger readers.

The Gift (Witch and Wizard Series #2) by James Patterson and Ned Rust (Little Brown Books for Young Readers), ages 10+, about teen sibling magicians, elicits utter contempt from Kirkus: “There are no characters that even rise to the level of stereotypes and no genuine emotions in this embarrassing attempt at a ‘fantasy’ series that insults both genre and audience at every turn… A new low in children’s publishing.”

Entice by Carrie Jones (Bloomsbury Children’s Books) is the latest book in the bestselling paranormal romance series. Kirkus says, “Fans of the first two will continue to swoon, enjoying prose that’s idiosyncratically casual and indulgently, oh-so-teen-like angsty.”

The Vixen by Julie Larkin (Delacorte for Young Readers) is the first in a new series, set in the 1920’s. Like the Luxe series, in which Gossip Girl meets Edith Wharton, this one could be considered Gossip Girl meets F. Scott Fitzgerald. PW called it a “frothy debut,” but felt “the plot doesn’t live up to scrutiny.”

Coming for adults is the followup to last year’s How to Sew On a Button: And Other Nifty Things Your Grandmother Knew (which is still showing holds in several libraries):

How to Build a Fire: and Other Handy Things Your Grandfather Knew, by Erin Bried, (Ballantine Books) imparts the skills the Greatest Generation supposedly knew, from chapters on “How to Buy Meat” to “How to Plan a Date.”

What is Art?

Thursday, December 9th, 2010

The most important cultural moment of 2010 may have been when the 92nd St. Y refunded money to those who bought tickets to hear an interview with Steve Martin (reportedly, many were disappointed that Martin talked too much about “art”), satarized on the Colbert Report last night.

The Colbert Report Mon – Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c
Steve Martin Pt. 2
Colbert Report Full Episodes Political Humor & Satire Blog</a> March to Keep Fear Alive


An Object of Beauty: A Novel
Steve Martin
Retail Price: $26.99
Hardcover: 304 pages
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing – (2010-11-23)
ISBN / EAN: 0446573647 / 978

OverDrive WMA Audiobook; BBC Audio America
Hachette Audio, UNABR, Campbell Scott Narrator, 9781607886129, $34.98
BBC Audio; UNABR; Campbell Scott, Narrator, 9781607889403; $74.99


Wednesday, December 8th, 2010

Sweeping the British Indie Awards last week, The King’s Speech, starring Colin Firth, Helena Bonham Carter and Geoffrey Rush, has also been a hit in the six U.S. theaters in which it is currently showing.

Firth stars as King George VI, the father of Queen Elizabeth II, who overcame a debilitating speech impediment with the help of therapist Lionel Logue (played by Geoffrey Rush). He went on to be beloved for his ability to boost morale in his countrymen during WWII.

The story is also told in book form by the grandson of Lionel Logue and Sunday Times of London journalist, Peter Conradi.

The King’s Speech: How One Man Saved the British Monarchy
Mark Logue, Peter Conradi
Retail Price: $14.95
Paperback: 256 pages
Publisher: Sterling – (2010-11-26)
ISBN / EAN: 140278676X / 9781402786761