Archive for the ‘2013/14 – Winter/Spring’ Category

Nancy Pearl Recommends: SINGLE, CAREFREE, MELLOW

Wednesday, March 18th, 2015

Screen Shot 2015-03-18 at 10.07.41 AMNancy Pearl featured Katherine Heiny’s debut short story collection Single, Carefree, Mellow (RH/Knopf; RH & BOT Audio, OverDrive Sample) on Seattle’s NPR affiliate KUOW yesterday.

Offering tips on how to read short stories, she suggests they are closer to poetry than fiction and advises readers to start with the first story and then put the book down for a day or two before picking it up again. “They repay you more,” she says, “if you give them space.”

Suggested as read-likes are Laurie Colwin’s The Lone Pilgrim and Melissa Bank’s The Girls Guide to Hunting and Fishing.

Nancy is not alone in appreciating Heiny. She has been featured on NPR’s All Things Considered, The Millions, and in The New York Times. Her book has been reviewed in Entertainment Weekly and The New York Times and was highlighted in O, the Oprah Magazine as one of the “17 Books You Should Be Reading This Spring.”

Circulation is strong in libraries we checked with holds at or exceeding a 3:1 ratio.

Nancy discusses a book each Tuesday on KUOW. An archive is available of past titles.


Thursday, March 6th, 2014

9781594204999Featured on Morning Edition today is former Marine Phil Klay, whose first book, Redeployment, released on Tuesday (Penguin), is a collection of  “a dozen vivid stories about the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan from the perspectives of the people who experienced it.” (listen to the show here).

The book is also featured on the cover of the upcoming NYT Book Review  (not yet online) and was reviewed by Michiko Kakutani in the daily NYT last week. Entertainment Weekly gave it an unequivocal  A. It comes with advance praise from an impressive range of writers, attesting to both the author’s authenticity and literary abilities, from Anthony Swofford (Jarhead) to  Colum McCann, (Let the Great World Spin).


Monday, February 10th, 2014

The Party's OverThe former Republican Governor of Florida, Charlie Crist,  is running for that office again, but with a twist. He’s now running as a Democrat.

He made news last week by calling for the end of the embargo against Cuba.

He appears tomorrow night on Comedy Central’s The Colbert Report to talk about his book, released last week, The Party’s Over : How the Extreme Right Hijacked the GOP and I Became a Democrat, (Penguin/Dutton).


Monday, February 10th, 2014

The Second Machine AgeLibraries show growing holds on light ordering for The Second Machine Age: Work, Progress, and Prosperity in a Time of Brilliant Technologies by Erik Brynjolfsson and Andrew McAfee (Norton; Brilliance Audio).

The book has been getting attention in the print media, including Thomas Friendman’s column in The New York Times, an Op-Ed in The Washington Post, a piece by the book’s authors in the Financial Times, and a story in the UK’s Telegraph.

The authors appeared on Fareed Zakaria’a CNN show on Sunday.


Friday, February 7th, 2014

The Sixth ExtinctionA new book by Elizabeth Kolbert, a staff writer for the New Yorker, examines mass extinctions, like that of the dinosaurs caused by asteroids, and particularly the one we are going through now, which is caused by us and may lead to our own demise. The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History, (Macmillan/Holt; S&S Audio), arrives next week.

The author is scheduled to appear on several shows:

2/10 — CBS This Morning

2/10 or 2/11 — NPR All Things Considered

2/11 — The Daily Show with Jon Stewart 

There will also be print coverage in the NYT Science Section, the NYT Book Review, and New York Magazine.

The book grew out of a two-part series that Kolbert published in the New Yorker in December. Her previous book, Field Notes from a Catastrophe, (Macmillan/Bloomsbury, 2006) was on climate change.


Thursday, October 3rd, 2013

The Orphan TrainThe Orphan Train, a novel by Christina Baker Kline (author of The Way We Should Be, among others) rises to #5 on the USA Today Best Seller list this week, its highest spot to date. A paperback original, it is based on historical events, the rounding up of orphans from New York streets, between 1854 and 1929, to ship them via train to the midwest, in hopes families there would adopt them.

Programs commemorating that history are being held this month on the both ends of the orphan train route; New York’s Grand Central Station, where a musical based on the story opens next week, and in Minnesota’s Union Depot. posted a slideshow of photos from a nonfiction title, Extra! Extra! The Orphan Trains and Newsboys of New Yorkby Minnesota historian Renee Wendinger, whose mother was one of the Orphan Train children.

Christina Baker Kline’s novel, The Orphan Train  (Harper/Morrow; 4/2/13) was featured on NPR’s Weekend Edition Saturday in April. Holds are heavy in most libraries.

LIFE AFTER LIFE To Get Another Life

Wednesday, August 14th, 2013

Life After LifeLife After Life, British author Kate Atkinson’s eighth title was published to critical acclaim in the spring and became the author’s biggest seller, debuting at #3 on the  NYT Hardcover Fiction Best Seller. It remained on the main list for 8 weeks.

Lionsgate has just acquired the film rights according to Deadline.

The book’s involved plot about woman who is reborn multiple times will represent an interesting challenge for screenwriters Semi Chellas, who has written for Mad Men, and Esta Spalding, (The Bridge).

Don’t Weed Yet: THE GOOD HOUSE

Wednesday, August 7th, 2013

The Good HouseAnn Leary’s novel The Good House, (Macmillan/St. Martin’s; Macmillan Audio) is told through the eyes of a woman who is pretending to be sober, although her life is clearly unraveling. Despite the somber material, it still manages to be “wickedly funny” according to People magazine, which made it one of their Picks in January. It is being adapted as a movie,  starring Meryl Streep and  Robert De Niro, according to Deadline.

The Good House was on the extended NYT Hardcover Fiction best seller list for 5 weeks.

Robert Galbraith AKA J.K. Rowling

Monday, July 15th, 2013

The Cuckoo's CallingThe Sunday Times of London revealed this weekend that the true author of the supposed “debut” detective novel by “Robert Galbraith,” The Cuckoo’s Calling is actually J. K Rowling.

The Telegraph followed up by quoting a brave U.K. editor who admitted to rejecting the book, “I thought it was perfectly good – it was certainly well written – but it didn’t stand out. Strange as it might seem, that’s not quite enough. Editors have to fall in love with debuts. It’s very hard to launch new authors and crime is a very crowded market.”

Proving that comment, the Telegraph reports that before the true author’s name was revealed, the book may have sold fewer than 500 copies through British retailers.

Released in the U.S. on April 30 by Hachette’s mystery imprint, Mulholland Books, it received strong reviews from prepub sources; Publishers Weekly said, “In a rare feat, the pseudonymous Galbraith combines a complex and compelling sleuth and an equally well-formed and unlikely assistant with a baffling crime in his stellar debut.”

Holds are now skyrocketing in libraries; one large system now shows 450 holds on 6 copies. Another has already increased their order of 12 copies by 90 more. Those copies are likely to carry J.K. Rowling’s name; the NYT reports that the publisher has a reprint in the works with a revised author bio, “Robert Galbraith is a pseudonym for J. K. Rowling” and that a second book is coming next summer.

Real Nurse Jackies

Wednesday, May 22nd, 2013

I wasn't that strongCurrently at #19 on Amazon sales rankings and rising is an anthology of essays by nurses, I Wasn’t Strong Like This When I Started Out: True Stories of Becoming a Nurse, published by the small press, In Fact Books, which also publishes the quarterly magazine, Creative Nonfiction.

It is reviewed in the NYT today by Jane Gross who admits that, as the daughter of a nurse, she is “hardly a disinterested reviewer,” which is a good thing, giving her the ability to connect readers with the stories.

Many libraries own this anthology in modest quantities; Booklist reviewed it, saying, “It’s easy to love these empathetic people, and their beautifully written stories.”


Thursday, May 9th, 2013

World's Strongest LibrarianSalt Lake City librarian Josh Hanagarne is interviewed in today’s issue of USA Today for his book, The World’s Strongest Librarian,  (Penguin/Gotham. 5/2/13). Both weight lifting and books have helped him deal with his Tourette’s. About being a librarian, he says, “As a breed, we’re the ultimate generalists. I’ll never know everything about anything, but I’ll know something about almost everything and that’s how I like to live.”

Hanagarne announces on his blog that the book has sold out of its first printing.

Below, he describes what libraries mean to him.

GOLEM AND THE JINNI: Off to a Strong Start

Monday, May 6th, 2013

The Golem and the JinniHelene Wecker was already off to a good start with her first novel, The Golem and the Jinniwith a 3.5 star review in USA Today that invites readers to “dive in and happily immerse yourself, forgetting the troubles of daily life for a while.” The Huffington Post calls it “The Book We’re Talking About,” and similar to The Night Circus, “a stirring, magical debut. Its intertwining of mythology and historical fiction is very engagingly written.”

The New York Times puts the icing on the cake in a review that will appear in print tomorrow,

… this impressive first novel manages to combine the narrative magic of The Arabian Nights with the kind of emotional depth, philosophical seriousness and good, old-fashioned storytelling found in the stories of Isaac Bashevis Singer.

The book debuted on the May 12 NYT Hardcover Fiction extended list at #30 during its first week on sale.

Eve Ensler on The Today Show

Tuesday, April 30th, 2013

In the Body of the WorldEve Ensler, whose memoir, In the Body of the World, (Macmillan/Metropolitan; Macmillan Audio) is being published today, was profiled on the Today Show this morning by Maria Shriver.

Shriver, who left NBC in 2004, also announced that she is returning as a “special anchor,” and will be profiling people like Ensler whom she calls “architects of change” and “reporting on women’s evolving experiences.”

Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Sixty Minutes: ANGEL OF DEATH

Monday, April 29th, 2013

The Good NurseOne of the most prolific serial killers in history, Charlie Cullen, killed an estimated 40 people in sixteen years while working as a nurse in seven different hospitals. He was tried, convicted and is currently in prison.

He broke a long-standing silence for an interview on CBS Sixty Minutes last night. To try to understand why he committed these crimes, the show featured, Charles Graeber, author of The Good Nurse: A True Story of Medicine, Madness, and Murder (Hachette/Twelve, $26.99, 9780446505291. 4/15/13). The chilling answer was, “Because he could.”

Kids New Title Radar — Week of 4/29

Friday, April 26th, 2013

Several charming picture books are on their way next week (gotta love that pug in Everyone Sleeps), Lauren Myracle is set to reach a younger audience and screenwriter Paul Rudnick publishes his first YA novel with a cover that lives up to the title, Gorgeous.

All the titles highlighted here, and more (including a roundup of several new board books and several middle grade series that shouldn’t be overlooked, plus roundup of graphic novels and superhero comics), are on our downloadable spreadsheet, Kids New Title Radar, Week of 4.29.13.

Picture Books

9780399257933  9780805093124 9780399257636

My Lucky Birthday, Keiko Kasza, (Penguin/Putnam Juvenile)
From the creator of the storytime favorite My Lucky Day, another animal trickster romp.

Everyone Sleeps, Marcellus Hall, (Penguin/Paulsen)
Illustrator Hall (City I Love, Cow Loves Cookies) strikes out on his own, writing as well as illustrating his first picture book, featuring and adorable pug.

When You Wander: A Search-and-Rescue Dog Story, Margarita Engle, illus by Mary Morgan, (Macmillan/Holt BYR)
A gentle portrayal of the work of search and rescue dogs. Don’t worry about getting lost, they will find you.

Early Chapter Book

The Life of TyThe Life of Ty: Penguin Problems, Lauren Myracle, illus by Jed Henry, (Dutton)

Myracle is known by YA readers for several titles including Shine. To 9- and 10-year-olds, she is known for the Winnie Years series. She’ll soon to be known to a younger crowd with Ty, Winnie’s younger brother, appealing to fans of Judy Moody’s brother Stink. What are his “penguin problems”? Ty smuggles one out of the local zoo.

Young Adult


Gorgeous, Paul Rudnick, (Scholastic; Scholastic Audio)

The first YA novel by the stage and screen writer and frequent contributor to the New Yorker, a fantasy princess romance with a snarky voice and social commentary (PW says the writing is “hilarious, profane and profound — often in the same sentence”), likely to find an audience with the Princess Diary crowd.

Graphic Novels

Note:  superhero comics arriving next week are rounded up in the spreadsheet.

9780805096095 9780316217187 9780785164043

My Life as a Cartoonist, Janet Tashjian, Jake Tashjian, (Macmillan/Holt BYR)
In this sequel to My Life as a Book and My Life as a Stuntboy, Derek is being bullied by a tough kid who, upending the stereotype, is in a wheelchair. A Wimpy Kid look alike.

New Moon: The Graphic Novel, Vol. 1 , Stephenie Meyer, Young Kim, (Hachette/Yen Press)
Continues the graphic version of  the Twilight series.

Oz: Road to Oz, Skottie Young, Eric Shanower, (Marvel)
The graphic retellings of the Oz series are collected in this bind-up. Eric Shanower is the Eisner Award-winning and New York Times best selling cartoonist of Age of Bronze series, a graphic novel rendition of the Trojan War.