'21st Birthday' by James Patterson & Maxine Paetro Tops Holds Lists | Book Pulse

21st Birthday by James Patterson & Maxine Paetro leads holds this week. The People "Picks" book of the week is Three Dreamers by Lorenzo Carcaterra. Six LibraryReads selections and thirteen IndieNext picks arrive this week. Pennie's final pick for Costco is When the Apricots Bloom by Gina Wilkinson. The top ten reader-selected finalists in each category of the 2021 Locus Awards are announced. Connie Willis will MC the awards ceremony in June. The ReLit Award Winners for 2021 are announced and the May 2021 Earphones Award Winners are out at AudiofileWatchmen creator Alan Moore will publish a five-volume series of epic fantasy novels entitled ‘Long London’ due out in 2024. Plus, a group of authors from around the world have come together to fundraise for Indian COVID relief. 

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Big Books of the Week

21st Birthday by James Patterson & Maxine Paetro (Little, Brown and Company) leads holds this week.

Other titles in demand include:

Project: Hail Mary by Andy Weir (Ballantine)

The Newcomer by Mary Kay Andrews (St. Martin’s)

Hour of the Witch by Chris Bohjalian (Doubleday)

The Lady Has a Past by Amanda Quick (Berkley)

The Woman with the Blue Star by Pam Jenoff (Harlequin Park Row)

These books and others publishing the week of May 3rd, 2021 are listed in a downloadable spreadsheet.

Librarians and Booksellers Suggest

There are six LibraryReads selections publishing this week:

Project Hail Mary by Andy Weir (Ballantine; LJ starred review)

“Ryland Grace wakes up alone on a spaceship with amnesia. Gradually he remembers being on a one- way journey to save Earth from a dying sun. Then he encounters Rocky, an engineer on a similar mission. Hard to put down and impossible to forget, this is ingenious science fiction to celebrate and share."— Brenda O’Brien, Woodridge Public Library, Woodridge, IL

It is also an Indie Next selection:

“Remember how much you loved The Martian? Prepare to love this book even more. I found myself engrossed from the very beginning, and every page brings a new delight. Weir writes incredible characters that leave a mark you’ll feel long after you’re done.”—Mattie Shepard, Gramercy Books, Bexley, OH

Hour of the Witch by Chris Bohjalian (Doubleday)

“In Puritan New England, Mary Deerfield is trapped in a marriage with a violent man. She has the audacity to file for divorce in a time where women were accused of witchcraft for any perceived slight or behavior. This book is filled with strong women and speaks to the witch hunts of today.” —Lisa Casper, Douglas County Libraries, Highlands Ranch, CO

It is also an Indie Next selection:

Trapped in a marriage with a violent man in Puritan New England, the fierce and resilient Mary Deerfield has the audacity to file for divorce in a time when women are accused of witchcraft for any non-conforming behavior. While historical, this story rings true for today.”—Lisa Casper, Tattered Cover Colfax, Denver, CO

The Woman with the Blue Star by Pam Jenoff (Harlequin Park Row)

"Based on the true stories of Jewish families who utilized the sewers to escape persecution during WWII. Sadie struggles to come to terms with loss. Ella struggles to figure out where she fits in amidst the chaos. Their friendship brings them hope and purpose. For readers who enjoyed The Rose Code, Our Darkest Night."—Kate Eminhizer, Pamunkey Regional Library, Hanover, VA

It is also an Indie Next selection:

“In The Woman With the Blue Star, Jenoff continues to showcase herself as one of the masters of historical fiction, deftly intertwining emotional power with historical accuracy. Much like The Lost Girls of Paris, this is one our customers will be coming back for again and again.”—Alex Brubaker, Midtown Scholar Bookstore, Harrisburg, PA

The Newcomer by Mary Kay Andrews (St. Martin’s)

"Letty is on the run with her four-year-old niece, afraid she will be accused of her sister’s murder. She ends up at a beach front motel in Florida full of interesting and entertaining characters. Murder, fugitives, romance, and a great cast of characters. A perfect beach read. For readers who enjoy books by Elin Hildenbrand and Janet Evanovich."—Sandy Ruhmann, Allen Park Public Library, Allen Park, MI

It is also an Indie Next selection:

“Mary Kay Andrews knows how to put mystery and beach together to make a blockbuster novel. I know it’s really summer when a new novel by Andrews becomes available. The Newcomer is perfect for us right now. It’s got it all. I can’t wait to start hand-selling it.”—Jean Lewis, Copperfish Books, Punta Gorda, FL

Arsenic and Adobo by Mia P. Manansala (Berkley; LJ starred review)

“This fast-paced, cozy mystery with a diverse and colorful cast will make you laugh, cringe, and salivate. Lila has returned home to help with the family's failing Filipino restaurant, which is repeatedly panned by her food blogger ex. When he comes to lunch and ends up face down in his dessert, Lila becomes the prime murder suspect. For readers who enjoyed Dial A for Aunties and Mimi Lee Gets a Clue.” —Laura Eckert, Clermont County Public Library, Milford, OH

The Bookshop of Second Chances by Jackie Fraser (Ballentine)

“Nothing like turning a page in an upended life to find a surprising plot twist leading to a satisfying ending. That’s what readers will find in this charming novel. The power of books to soothe will attract bibliophiles, but stay for the lively banter of the romantic leads, the quirky local residents, and the brisk Scottish countryside. Perfect for fans of Evvie Drake Starts Over and The Bookish Life of Nina Hill.”—Kaite Stover, Kansas City Public Library, Kansas City, MO

There are nine additional Indie Next picks publishing this week:

Great Circle by Maggie Shipstead (Knopf; LJ starred review)

“Great Circle is about two women 100 years apart: pilot Marian Graves and Hadley Baxter, the actress cast to play the famous pilot. This epic novel is fascinating, adventurous, and well-written, with great characters, historical details, and fantastic settings. Don’t miss this journey!” —Kathy Morrison, Newtown Bookshop, Newtown, PA

Sorrowland by Rivers Solomon (MCD: Macmillan)

“Vern is a captivating protagonist from page one: gritty, determined, flawed, clever, and resourceful. The story slowly fills in all the details of a life that wasn’t what it seemed, and offers an ending you can’t predict. Sorrowland is beautiful, ugly, engaging, and awe-inspiring.”—Sydne Conant, A Room of One’s Own Bookstore, Madison, WI

Seed to Dust : Life, Nature, and a Country Garden by Marc Hamer (Greystone Books)

“This book has the kind of calm coziness that will leave your mind abuzz with wonder and reflection about the natural world, gardens, and our place in them. Gardener or not, this book has lessons for us all on the kind of patience, quiet, and listening we could use a bit more of in this world.”—Jacob Rogers, McNally Jackson Books, New York, NY

Olympus, Texas by Stacey Swann (Doubleday)

“A gripping debut that takes all of the skeletons out of the Briscoe family closet and throws them on the front lawn. The depth of character development speaks to my own east Texan family, which feels disconcerting and scandalous. A page-turning read that you won’t want to end.”—Charley Rejsek, BookPeople, Austin, TX

Pop Song : Adventures in Art & Intimacy by Larissa Pham (Catapult)

“Pop Song is an engaging blend of art criticism, memoir, and travelogue with the raw and confessional style of the microblogging generation. Larissa Pham’s prose bounces seamlessly and dexterously from looking outward to inward and back with equal attention, passion, and insight.”—Matt Stowe, Greenlight Bookstore, Brooklyn, NY

Madhouse at the End of the Earth : The Belgica's Journey into the Dark Antarctic Night by Julian Sancton (Crown)

“What I love about polar expedition stories is imagining surviving the same situation. Madhouse at the End of the Earth is a fascinating study of chasing fame at any cost and the price paid when things go horribly wrong. A worthy addition to the canon of polar expedition history.”—Tom Beans, Dudley’s Bookshop Café, Bend, OR

Ariadne by Jennifer Saint (Flatiron)

“Satisfying the need for more Greek/Roman transformational myths from much-needed other viewpoints, Jennifer Saint delivers tales of Ariadne and her sister Phaedra’s life on Crete and beyond. Less heroic yarn and more character inquisitiveness — a refreshing addition.”—Michelle Bear, Edmonds Bookshop, Edmonds, WA

Secrets of Happiness by Joan Silber (Counterpoint)

“No one is better than Joan Silber at revealing the hidden links that connect people. The small, human details in Secrets of Happiness feel at first like ripples in a pond, but they prove in the end to be mighty waves in an ocean the size of the world.”—James Crossley, Madison Books, Seattle, WA

The Last Thing He Told Me by Laura Dave (S. & S.)

“I adore Laura Dave and absolutely loved The Last Thing He Told Me. Wonderful characters, amazing writing, and a twisty plot kept me turning the pages as fast as I could. Truly unputdownable and a thoroughly enjoyable read!” —Kaitlin Smith, Copperfield’s Books, Healdsburg, CA

In the Media

The People "Picks" book of the week is Three Dreamers by Lorenzo Carcaterra (Ballantine). Also getting attention are Whereabouts by Jhumpa Lahiri (Knopf: LJ starred review) and Everything Is Fine by Vince Granata (Atria). A “New in Suspense" section highlights The Drowning Kind by Jennifer McMahon (Gallery), Mother May I by Joshilyn Jackson (William Morrow), and The Last Thing He Told Me by Laura Dave (S. & S.). The “Audio Pick” is Leaving Isn’t the Hardest Thing (Vintage: Random House; LJ starred review). The “Picks” section highlights Without Remorse, based on the book by Tom Clancy with associated titles, The Handmaid’s Tale on Hulu, and The Mosquito Coast, based on the book by Paul Theroux, on Apple TV+, Plus, Shadow and Bone’s Jessie Mei Li is named one to watch.

The cover story features Dwayne Wade and Gabrielle Union, whose forthcoming book You Got Anything Stronger? (Dey Street Books), is out in September. There is a profile of Andrew McCarthy, Brat: An ’80s Story (Grand Central) and a look at George W. Bush’s, Out of Many, One: Portraits of America's Immigrants (Crown), art studio. Plus, Chef Jeff Mauro, Come On Over: 111 Fantastic Recipes for the Family That Cooks, Eats, and Laughs Together (William Morrow Cookbooks) offers a recipe. People online also has a feature on poet Rupi Kaur, who released her special after being turned down by streaming services. 


NPR reviews Persist by Elizabeth Warren (Metropolitan: Macmillan): “It's a series of stories, then plans. It's campaign-trail Warren, in book form.” Also, Fugitive Telemetry by Martha Wells (Tordotcom): “It's a story that takes place over the course of a single day — leaving little time for the usual moping around, media consumption and snarky commentary on human systems that makes Murderbot so charming.”

The Washington Post reviews Second First Impressions by Sally Thorne (Morrow): “an addictive romance filled with deep feeling, crackling attraction and cackling laughs.”

The NYT reviews Great Circle by Maggie Shipstead (Knopf; LJ starred review): “Here we have an action-packed book rich with character, but it’s at the level of the sentence and the scene, the small but unforgettable salient detail, that books finally succeed or fail. In that, “Great Circle” is consistently, often breathtakingly, sound.” Also, Higher Ground by Anke Stelling (Scribe US): “The most frustrating thing about ‘Higher Ground’ is that by the end, one sympathizes with the people it was meant to denounce.”

The LA Times pairs reviews of Whereabouts by Jhumpa Lahiri (Knopf: LJ starred review) and Notes on Grief (Knopf: Random House): “provide glimpses of lives in crisis in great and small ways. Adichie’s direct, urgent voice is heated, heartbroken; Lahiri’s fictional one simmers on a low boil. Both feel true and wise to the core.”

The Guardian reviews Second Place by Rachel Cusk (Farrar; LJ starred review): “as a tale of midlife malaise, ‘Second Place’ glints with many of Cusk’s typically frosty pleasures; she’s especially sharp, for instance, on the fraught enterprise of parenting grownup children who return to the nest.” Also, Real Estate by Deborah Levy (Bloomsbury): “a drily funny contemplation of what it means to be a female writer.”

Briefly Noted

USA Today picks five books for the week.

CrimeReads suggests 10 books out this week.

Time suggests “12 New Books You Should Read in May.”

The May 2021 Earphones Award Winners are out at Audiofile.

The NYT suggests "15 New Books to Watch For in May."

The Millions offers its "Most Anticipated May Preview."

In Costco Connection, Pennie Clark Ianniciello picks When the Apricots Bloom by Gina Wilkinson (Kensington). There is also this note from Costco: “This is Pennie’s final pick, as she is retiring after 32 years with Costco. She was the book buyer for 27 of those years. We wish her well!” The Buyer’s Pick is Finding Ashley by Danielle Steel (Delacorte Press: Random House).

The Locus Science Fiction Foundation has announced the top ten reader-selected finalists in each category of the 2021 Locus Awards. Winners will be announced June 26, during the virtual Locus Awards Weekend with Connie Willis serving as MC. 

The ReLit Award Winners for 2021 were announced. 

The Washington Post reports that German philosopher Juergen Habermas will not accept the Sheikh Zayed Book Award, reversing an earlier decision.

Entertainment Weekly has an exclusive excerpt of Stolen: A Memoir by Elizabeth Gilpin (Grand Central Publishing), which will be published on July 20th.

USA Today interviews Nancy Colier, author of Can’t Stop Thinking: How to Let Go of Anxiety and Free Yourself from Obsessive Rumination (New Harbinger Publications) about her “effort to help people liberate themselves from the obsessive rumination, catastrophizing and negative self-thoughts that have plagued many of her clients over her 25 years in practice.”

Time profiles Alison Bechdel, The Secret to Superhuman Strength (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt), who is "no longer trying to outrun death."

NPR interviews comics hero Barry Windsor-Smith about his “opinions on comics, art and his magnum opus,” Monsters (Fantagraphics: W.W. Norton).

The New York Times Magazine offers a wide-ranging interview with Stephen Fry, author of the forthcoming Troy: The Greek Myths Reimagined (Chronicle Books). Also, The NYT talks with Andy Weir, Project: Hail Mary (Ballantine), about plotting, particle physics, and more.

The Washington Post has a Q&A with Jenny Lawson, author of Broken (in the best possible way) (Holt: Macmillan).

Oprah Daily has a feature on U.S. Poet Laureate Joy Harjo, the first Native American to be named to that post, and the first woman to be appointed to a third term. Also, Kevin Young reflects on the current Black Poetry Renaissance and his new job as Director of the National Museum of African American History and Culture at the Smithsonian. Plus, What Happened to You by Bruce Perry (Flatiron Books: Macmillan) about overcoming childhood trauma and supporting others who need help makes its third stop on virtual tour with special guests Kristen Bell and Dax Shepard.

Watchmen creator Alan Moore inks deal with Bloomsbury to publish a five-volume series of epic fantasy novels entitled ‘Long London’ due out in 2024. Deadline has details.

Former Bachelorette Rachel Lindsay will release a collection of personal essays in January called Miss Me with That: Hot Takes, Helpful Tidbits, and a Few Hard Truths (Ballentine), Entertainment Weekly reports.

A group of authors from around the world have come together to fundraise for Indian COVID relief. LitHub has the story. Arundhati Roy has a piece on the crisis at The Guardian.

Joshua Wolf Shenk has resigned as editor of the Believer magazine, reports The LA Times. 

Fred Jordan, Publisher of Taboo-Breaking Books, Dies at 95. The NYT has an obituary. Also, a remembrance of Jason Matthews, C.I.A. Officer Turned Novelist, who died at 69.

Authors on Air

NPR’s Weekend Edition interviews Maggie Shipstead, author of Great Circle (Knopf; LJ starred review) about adventuring and being inspired by Amelia Earhart. Also, Morning Edition interviews Michael Lewis about his nonfiction thriller, The Premonition (W. W. Norton), “a sweeping indictment of the CDC”. Plus, Pop Culture Happy Hour reviews Shadow and Bone.

The Hollywood Reporter has a list of Netflix’s May New Releases.

Four Good Days, based on the Washington Post article “How’s Amanda? A Story of Truth, Lies and American Addiction” by Eli Saslow “Posts Sturdy Premiere”, Deadline reports, while The Father gets a modest post-award bump.

Senator Elizabeth Warren, Persist (Metropolitan: Macmillan) is on The View tomorrow. DeVon Franklin, Live Free: Exceed Your Highest Expectations (William Morrow) is on Wendy Williams. Emmanuel Acho, Uncomfortable Conversations with a Black Boy (Roaring Brook Press), will be on Ellen. George Saunders A Swim in a Pond in the Rain: In Which Four Russians Give a Master Class on Writing, Reading, and Life (Random) visits with Seth Meyers.  And, Senator Mazie K Hirono, Heart of Fire: An Immigrant Daughter’s Story (Viking; LJ starred review), will be on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert. 

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