LJ, SLJ, & Horn Book Offer Free Access; Ingram Deemed Essential | Book Pulse

Ingram is deemed an essential business and remains open as Nashville shelters in place. The Glass Hotel by Emily St. John Mandel leads holds this week. The British Book Awards unveils its short list. Canada Reads offers a series of five, one-hour audio programs on each of its titles. Belletrist has started a virtual book tour. LitHub starts The Virtual Book Channel.

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Big Books of the Week

The Glass Hotel by Emily St. John Mandel (Knopf: Random House; LJ starred review) leads holds this week.

Other titles in demand include:

The Honey-Don’t List by Christina Lauren (Gallery: S. & S.)

The City We Became by N.K. Jemisin (Orbit: Hachette; LJ starred review)

The Last Odyssey by James Rollins (William Morrow: Harper)

These books and others publishing the week of March 23, 2020, are listed in a downloadable spreadsheet.

Librarians and Booksellers Suggest

Four LibraryReads choices publish this week, two of which are also Indie Next selections:

The Glass Hotel by Emily St. John Mandel (Knopf: Random House; LJ starred review)

“A gorgeously written, immersive book about how easy it is to cross lines into questionable moral territory. At its center is Vincent, who loses her mother when she's 13 and as an adult makes her way into the heart of the Country of Money in New York City. Narrated by a number of well-drawn characters in a shifting timeline. For fans of A Visit from the Goon Squad and The Goldfinch.” —Diana Armstrong, Multnomah County Library, Portland, OR

“In this ghostly story of ignoring what’s right in front of you, a group of characters try to grapple with what seems like inevitable choices. Mandel’s book is like the glass in the title: her language glitters while offering clarity and reflection, and her characters are like broken shards, mesmerizing in one light and dangerously ordinary in another. Combining the humanity and structure of Station Eleven with the brutal realism of her earlier works, The Glass Hotel is an exceptional novel.” —Marika McCoola, Porter Square Books, Cambridge, MA [it is the Indie Next No. 1 pick for the month].

The Honey-Don't List by Christina Lauren (Gallery: S. & S.)

“Imagine a world in which two HGTV-style design gurus have a terrible marriage and their assistants have to keep everything from falling apart. This is a super-fun, fast, and easy read.” —Maria Maia, River Forest Public Library, River Forest, IL

“A famous rom-com duo takes on HGTV in their latest surefire hit. Underpaid and overworked assistants Carey and James didn’t intend to be in charge of keeping together a reality TV couple’s marriage, but here they are. They also didn’t intend to fall for each other, but as they try to fix the crumbling marriage of Melissa and Rusty Tripp, they find common ground. Equal parts sweet and steamy, with a story about finding your spine and self-worth.” —Sami Thomason, Square Books, Oxford, MS

If I Never Met You by Mhairi McFarlane (William Morrow: Harper)

“When Jamie and Laurie become trapped in an elevator, they conjure up a fake relationship in order to get what they want from work and make an ex jealous. They end up falling for each other...but can they trust it? An enjoyable romance with characters you care about. For readers who liked Not the Girl You Marry and The Flatshare.”  —Melissa Stumpe, Johnson County Public Library, Greenwood, IN

The Return by Rachel Harrison (Berkley: Penguin)

"The story of a creepy hotel, a mysterious disappearance and reappearance, and the complexities of friendships. For fans of Stephen King and Thomas Harris." —Kate Currie, Hennepin County Library, Hennepin County, MN

Also on the Indie Next list:

Enter the Aardvark by Jessica Anthony (Little, Brown: Hachette)

“I’ve never read a novel quite like this one. The story connects two storylines, one revolving around the stuffing of an aardvark and the other around a repressed, Reagan-obsessed, republican millennial congressman. What I loved most about this novel is that it’s kind of ridiculous (in a great way!) but it is also very poignant and leaves the reader changed by the end. Bravo, Jessica Anthony!” —John McManus, Main Point Books, Wayne, PA

The City We Became by N.K. Jemisin (Orbit: Hachette; LJ starred review)

“I love N.K. Jemisin’s books, I love New York City, and I love this book about the soul and personification of New York. The City We Became might just be my favorite book to be published in 2020. This story is filled with tension, humor, and great characters, with a guest appearance near and dear to me. While this book is the beginning of a trilogy, it is completely satisfying as a stand-alone novel. Read it and be happy.” —Doug Chase, Powell’s Books, Portland, OR

In the Media

People’s book of the week is The Jetsetters by Amanda Eyre Ward (Ballantine: Random House). Also getting attention are The Mountains Sing by Nguyen Phan Que Mai (Algonquin: Workman; LJ starred review) and A Good Neighborhood by Therese Anne Fowler (St. Martin’s: Macmillan; LJ starred review). New in nonfiction are The Firsts: The Inside Story of the Women Reshaping Congress by Jennifer Steinhauer (Algonquin), Wag: The Science of Making Your Dog Happy by Zazie Todd (Greystone Books; LJ starred review), and The Office: The Untold Story of the Greatest Sitcom of the 2000s by Andy Greene (Dutton: Penguin). On the “Picks” list are My Brilliant Friend, Self Made: Inspired by the Life of Madam C.J. Walker, and The Letter for the King. There is a feature on Suzanne Somers, A New Way to Age: The Most Cutting-Edge Advances in Antiaging (Gallery: S. & S.), and one on Jen Gotch, The Upside of Being Down: How Mental Health Struggles Led to My Greatest Successes in Work and Life (Gallery: S. & S.). The food section showcases From Freezer to Cooker: Delicious Whole-Foods Meals for the Slow Cooker, Pressure Cooker, and Instant Pot: A Cookbook by Polly Conner, Rachel Tiemeyer (Rodale: Random House).


The NYT reviews The Glass Hotel by Emily St. John Mandel (Knopf: Random House; LJ starred review): “I wasn’t sure whether Mandel wants us to think that the wealthy are more interesting than we think, or just as lame as the caricatures have it, but if it was the former, she doesn’t succeed in showing us how, and the latter is not a very stirring premise for a novel.” Also, the Children’s Book column is out “Picture Books That Show the World Through a Child’s Eyes.”

NPR reviews Hearts of Oak by Eddie Robson (Tor.com: Macmillan; LJ starred review): “It's a testament to Robson's swift storytelling, endearing characters, and deftly controlled world-building that the book not only works on both ends but succeeds wildly.”

The Washington Post reviews American Nero: The History of the Destruction of the Rule of Law, and Why Trump Is the Worst Offender by Richard Painter, Peter Golenbock (BenBella Books): “a devastating picture of how much has been broken in how little time.” Also,  The Power Worshippers: Inside the Dangerous Rise of Religious Nationalism by Katherine Stewart (Bloomsbury: Macmillan; LJ starred review): “required reading for anyone who wants to map the continuing erosion of our already fragile wall between church and state.” The Divided States of America: Why Federalism Doesn't Work by Donald F. Kettl (Princeton): “the historical background he provides on the evolution of Madison’s nation-founding invention will be useful to anyone seeking to flesh out additional remedies.” Islamic Empires: The Cities that Shaped Civilization?From Mecca to Dubai by Justin Marozzi (Pegasus: W.W. Norton): “It is a project more demanding than what this quick-hit survey can accomplish.” Reef Life: An Underwater Memoir by Callum Roberts (Pegasus: S. & S.): “Roberts’s rich language will call to you. You will feel a yearning to follow him, to leave the burning sun, to step into the coolness of the water, to feel the tugging of the currents.” Get Out of Your Own Way: A Skeptic’s Guide to Growth and Fulfillment by Dave Hollis (Harper): “the Hollis way is to attract a crowd, not create a community.”

Briefly Noted

USA Today picks books for the week.

The British Book Awards unveils its short list. The Bookseller has the titles.

Vulture interviews Hilary Mantel, The Mirror & The Light (Henry Holt: Macmillan; LJ starred review).

LitHub interviews Sarah Perry, After Me Comes the Flood (Custom House: Harper).

The Guardian features Maggie O’Farrell, Hamnet (Knopf). Also, an interview with Jami Attenberg, All This Could Be Yours (HMH; LJ starred review) and one with Rebecca Solnit, Recollections of My Nonexistence: A Memoir (Viking: Penguin).

Shondaland has an essay by Tif Marcelo, Once Upon a Sunset (Gallery Books: S. & S.).

Jessica Moor, The Keeper (Penguin) writes “Our Obsession with Beautiful Dead Girls Is Keeping Us from Addressing Domestic Violence” on CrimeReads.

Vox appreciates Jane Hirshfield’s Ledger (Bloodaxe Books).

Actress Sydney Sweeney (Sharp Objects) is starting a book club. Bustle is serving as her partner. The first book pick is We Used to Be Friends by Amy Spalding (Abrams).

Singer, actor, and author Kenny Rogers has died. PBS NewsHour has an obituary. CBS Sunday Morning has more, as does the NYT.

Historian and author James V. Hatch has died. The NYT has an obituary.

Coronavirus Reading and RA/Collection Development Resources

Ingram is deemed an essential business and remains open as Nashville shelters in place. Publishers Lunch reports. Ingram has more on its own webpage.

Library Journal, School Library Journal, and Horn Book now offer free access to online issues.

PW is now offering free access to its online issues (here is the first). Also, PW has a summary of “How the Book Biz Is Coping with the Coronavirus.”

In the UK, James Daunt who earlier said that bookstores were “no different to a supermarket or pharmacy” in terms of their essential nature, has closed the Waterstones bookstores. The Guardian has details. In the U.S., where Daunt is in charge of B&N, he has already suggested layoffs. Vice has those details.

The NYT reports on how “Mo Willems, Gene Luen Yang, Amie Kaufman and other authors for young readers are reading their work online and offering drawing tutorials, to help fill our strange new hours.”

The Washington Post features ways to get reading material when cities are shut down. The library’s digital collections top the list.

PBS NewsHour suggests “8 books to read in the time of the coronavirus.”

Jo Walton has an essay on “Books in Which No Bad Things Happen” for Tor.com.

People supplies “Music, Podcasts and Audiobooks to Enjoy Listening to While Social Distancing.”

USA Today offers a reading list entitled “Travel the world in spite of coronavirus by reading these 10 transporting travelogues.”

Electric Lit has Hernan Diaz, In the Distance (Coffee House; LJ starred review), recommend “11 Stories About Isolation and Loneliness.”

Matt Bell Hosts Amber Sparks, Mary South, and Megan Giddings in LitHub’s Literary Happy Hour. Also from LitHub, The Virtual Book Channel begins its "Shelter in Place" interviews with authors whose book tours have been disrupted. Kevin Nguyen, New Waves (One World: Random House), is up first. (Here is more on The Virtual Book Channel).

Actors are reading sonnets on Twitter. Related, USA Today lists some of the sites offering virtual story time.

Belletrist has started a virtual book tour. There are three episodes thus far (here are the other two).

Little Free Libraries are getting turned into food banks. People has details.

Lilly Dancyger, the editor of Burn It Down: Women Writing about Anger (Seal Press: Hachette) and the author of the forthcoming Negative Space (Santa Fe Writers Project), writes an essay for Electric Lit titled “My Book Comes Out Next Year. Do I Even Still Believe in Next Year?

Otto Penzler, owner of The Mysterious Bookshop, features in Deadline’s series “Coping with COVID-19.”

The NYT highlights Marie Kondo’s days during the pandemic.

Entertainment Weekly begins the Quarantine Book Club wherein EW “staffers discuss how they're coping with experiences of anxiety, isolation, and looots of free time through books.”

The Washington Post features Barbara Ehrenreich, Had I Known: Collected Essays (Twelve: Hachette), who says “we’re in trouble as a species.”

Authors on Air

CBS Sunday Morning showcases Alicia Keys, More Myself: A Journey (Flatiron Books: Macmillan). She also reads an excerpt. On the show as well, author and chef Bobby Flay talks about “food as a retreat” and shares recipes “for discomfiting times.”

On It’s Lit, part of PBS Digital Studios's Storied, Princess Weekes discusses Afrofuturism. There is also a segment on fanfiction. Tor.com has a bit more on the Afrofuturism video.

Canada Reads offers a series of five, one-hour audio programs on each of its titles.

NPR interviews Emily St. John Mandel, The Glass Hotel (Knopf: Random House; LJ starred review) also, an interview with Glennon Doyle, Untamed (The Dial Press: Random House) and one with Gene Luen Yang, Dragon Hoops (First Second: Macmillan; SLJ starred review). SLJ also has an interview.

The Mandalorian adds Rosario Dawson to its cast. T Kira Madden’s Long Live the Tribe of Fatherless Girls is headed to the movies. Also, Judy Blume’s Wifey is headed to HBO. Deadline reports.

BuzzFeed offers “13 YA Books To Read While You Wait For The New Lord Of The Rings Series.”

Outlander has ASMR videos. Town & Country reports.

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