'The Book of X' by Sarah Rose Etter Wins Shirley Jackson Award | Book Pulse

Too Much and Never Enough by Mary Trump leads holds this week, even as a judge continues to prevent Dr. Trump from prompting or discussing her work. Colson Whitehead wins the Library of Congress Prize for American Fiction for The Nickel Boys. The Shirley Jackson Awards are out. The Book of X by Sarah Rose Etter wins for best novel. People’s "Book of the Week" is Gatecrasher by Ben Widdicombe. The National Book Awards will be all digital in 2020 due to the pandemic. The ceremony will take place, online, on Nov. 18.

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Big Books of the Week

Too Much and Never Enough: How My Family Created the World’s Most Dangerous Man by Mary Trump (S. & S.) leads holds this week, showing huge demand.

Other titles in demand include:

The Order by Daniel Silva (Harper).

A Walk Along the Beach by Debbie Macomber (Ballantine Books: Random House)

Cajun Justice by James Patterson, Tucker Axum III (Grand Central: Hachette)

Peace Talks by Jim Butcher (Ace: Berkley: Penguin: LJ starred review)

What You Wish For by Katherine Center (St. Martin’s: Macmillan)

These books and others publishing the week of July 13, 2020, are listed in a downloadable spreadsheet.

Librarians and Booksellers Suggest

Four LibraryReads picks publish this week, including the No. 1 pick of the month: Peace Talks: A Novel of the Dresden Files by Jim Butcher (Ace: Penguin; LJ starred review)

“Eagerly awaited by wizard Harry Dresden’s legion of fans, this 16th book in the series is definitely worth the wait. Wonderful scenes feature magical illusions, and many familiar characters return for peace talks in Chicago. Not much is peaceful for Harry, as the wizards might kick him off the White Council, faerie Queen Mab wants him to do a couple of favors for vampire Lara, and Harry’s half-brother is in prison after an assassination attempt. For series fans of The Hollows, The Iron Druid Chronicles, and The Nightside.” —Brenda O’Brien, Woodridge Public Library, Woodridge, IL

The three additional picks are also Indie Next selections as well:

The Only Good Indians by Stephen Graham Jones (Gallery/Saga: S. & S.; LJ starred review)

"An own voices horror novel that begins with four young Native American men on a hunting trip that will haunt each of them in unimaginable ways. For fans of Owl Goingback’s Coyote Rage." —Sarah Fetzer, West Palm Beach City Library, West Palm Beach, FL

“I loved this book. Jones has a unique narrative voice, allowing ‘the entity’ to step in and take over unexpectedly, amping up the horror. Also, each character has a distinct voice that brings them to life. Jones combines the culture and traditions of the Blackfeet and Crow people with the social truths of their contemporary life. It is refreshingly different from any other horror novel I’ve read. This book is gruesome and honestly scary. I couldn’t put it down.” —Kristine Jelstrom-Hamill, Buttonwood Books and Toys, Cohasset, MA

What You Wish For by Katherine Center (St. Martin’s: Macmillan)

"Sam thought the dynamic Duncan Carpenter was out of her life forever, until he returns to the school at which she\'s a librarian and makes her think she might just get her happily ever after. For fans of JoJo Moyes and Rebecca Serle." —Tracy Babiasz, Chapel Hill Public Library, Chapel Hill, NC

“Sam Casey loves her job as an elementary school librarian on Galveston Island. That is until the founder and principal suddenly passes away and is replaced by Sam’s former crush Duncan Carpenter, who has become a stickler for rules and safety rather than the carefree, charismatic leader he was when they worked together years ago. As Sam and her colleagues try to thwart Duncan’s initiatives, she digs deeper to learn why he’s changed. A lovely novel about moving through grief and choosing to find joy wherever you can.” —Cathy Berner, Blue Willow Bookshop, Houston, TX

Crooked Hallelujah by Kelli Jo Ford (Grove Press)

“A well-crafted story of identity, survival, and loyalty that explores the terrain of love and heartbreak, loss and displacement for four generations of Native American women across four decades. Finding their own sources of strength, these proud, fierce women magnetically draw the reader in. For readers who enjoy Louise Erdrich and Diane Glancy.” —Janet Schneider, Peninsula Public Library, Lawrence, NY

“This astonishing debut fills the imagination with vivid scenes of life in Oklahoma’s Cherokee Nation and in the oil country of Texas. Home can be hard to find, men can be forever unreliable, and poverty can be more brutal than the harsh rural landscape, but the bonds women form with their mothers, grandmothers, and daughters make life not just bearable but luminous. This is an astonishing debut novel, rich in Cherokee history and culture, full-bodied in terms of character, and as bighearted as the women it portrays.” —Betsy Burton, The King’s English Bookshop, Salt Lake City, UT

There are four more Indie Next selections as well:

The Safe Place by Anna Downes (Minotaur Books: Macmillan)

The Safe Place is sure to captivate readers as they look to unearth the secret within the gates of an idyllic estate on the southern coast of France. From chapter one, I was hooked and transported to the luxurious lifestyle Downes creates in the book. Her storytelling and the myriad of clues she sprinkles throughout the story made this an unputdownable page-turner. A must for your 2020 reading list!” —Elise Lee, Away With Words Bookshop, Poulsbo, WA

Filthy Beasts by Kirkland Hamill (Avid Reader Press: S. & S.)

“Memoir enthusiasts will love Filthy Beasts by debut author Kirkland Hamill. East Coast wealth, glamorous locations, and a dysfunctional family make for a great blend of memoir and page-turner. Hamill, brought up by a loving but alcoholic mother, sets forth an honest and heartbreaking story that is well-written and well worth reading this summer.” —Sally Lovegrove, Barrett Bookstore, Darien, CT

Utopia Avenue by David Mitchell (Random House)

“Another delightfully addictive novel from this masterful storyteller. We get in on the ground floor witnessing the formation and rise of a rock band in London just as the British Invasion is taking off. Filled with great characters and lots of fun, inside Mitchellisms fans will love — a character named De Zoet, an album with Cloud Atlas in the title — this is a wonderful book and perfect summer reading.” —Cody Morrison, Square Books, Oxford, MS

Miracle Country: A Memoir by Kendra Atleework (Algonquin: Workman; LJ starred review)

Miracle Country is one of those books that takes on the personality of the place in which it’s set, and in the case of the Owens River Valley, that personality is starkly beautiful and full of rugged vitality. Atleework’s unflinching combination of personal and natural exploration is the perfect complement to the backdrop of the High Sierra, and she somehow manages to encapsulate both the allure and the contemptuousness of the mountains—and existence in general—through an examination of her own life. Harsh and brutal, resplendent and inviting, this book makes the Sierra Nevada tangible in a way that only great writing can.” —David Nurick, Cellar Door Books, Riverside, CA (on the August list).

In the Media

People’s "Book of the Week" is Gatecrasher: How I Helped the Rich Become Famous and Ruin the World by Ben Widdicombe (S. & S.). Also getting attention are The Lost and Found Bookshop by Susan Wiggs (William Morrow: Harper; LJ starred review) and Becoming Duchess Goldblatt by Anonymous (HMH). People’s "Pick’s" list includes Greyhound, The Old Guard, and Brave New World. The magazine asks stars what they are reding. Tracee Ellis Ross answers Me Talk Pretty One Day by David Sedaris (Back Bay Books: Hachette). Chris Hemsworth is reading The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse by Charlie Mackesy (HarperOne). Elle Fanning says it is The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah (St. Martin’s: Macmillan). There is also a farewell for Carl Reiner and some advice from Michael T. Osterholm, Deadliest Enemy: Our War Against Killer Germs (Little, Brown Spark: Hachette). The recipe section features Rocco's Keto Comfort Food Diet: Eat the Foods You Miss and Still Lose Up to a Pound a Day by Rocco DiSpirito (Rodale: Random House).


The NYT reviews Crooked Hallelujah by Kelli Jo Ford (Grove Press): “rolls about like a tumbleweed buffeted by desert breezes, meandering aimlessly around thorny issues of intergenerational poverty and female despair but never quite launching into a satisfying story or even providing a convincing case for mediocrity.” There is a group review of children’s books about “How to Hike, Camp, Relax in the Great Outdoors.” Lastly, the Crime column is out.

The Washington Post reviews Let them Eat Tweets: How the Right Rules in an Age of Extreme Inequality by Jacob S. Hacker, Paul Pierson (Liveright: W.W. Norton): “accurately describe an overarching pattern of the super-rich using the Republican Party to tilt the American economy and political life in their favor.” Also, Putin's People: How the KGB Took Back Russia and Then Took On the West by Catherine Belton (FSG: Macmillan): “an outstanding account of Putin’s Russia, and elegantly told.” Man of Tomorrow: The Relentless Life of Jerry Brown by Jim Newton (Little, Brown: Hachette): “vivid and admiring.” Ghosting the News: Local Journalism and the Crisis of American Democracy by Margaret Sullivan (Columbia Global Reports): “succeeds in its aim of delivering an urgent message in a concise way.”

NPR reviews Survivor Song by Paul Tremblay (William Morrow: Harper): “Quiet. That's what it is. Except for when it is very, very loud. Plodding (which might seem weird for a book with such a compressed time-line) except for when it absolutely is not. It's a ticking-clock action novel that is, at the same time, timeless, like all the clocks have been turned to liquid.” Also, The Unadoptables by Hana Tooke (Viking Books for Young Readers: Penguin): “just the escape fantasy my children are looking for while they are stuck at home with adults who are far more mundanely sinister.”


Colson Whitehead wins the Library of Congress Prize for American Fiction for The Nickel Boys (Doubleday: Random House). USA Today reports.

The Shirley Jackson Awards are out. The Book of X by Sarah Rose Etter (Two Dollar Radio) wins for best novel. Tor.com has the full list of nominees and winners.

The National Book Awards will be all digital in 2020 due to the pandemic. The ceremony will take place, online, on Nov. 18.

Briefly Noted

USA Today picks five books for the week.

Tor.com offers “All the New Horror and Genre-Bending Books Arriving in July.”

John Grisham has summer reads for Amazon.

The NYT has a feature on Neil Gaiman and the Audible edition of  Sandman  arriving tomorrow. 

One of the lead prosecutors involved in the Rober Muller special counsel investigation is writing a book, Where Law Ends : Inside the Mueller Investigation by Andrew Weissmann (Random House). USA Today reports.

USA Today also reports a judge is still imposing a gag order on Dr. Trump.

Axios reports that Donald Trump Jr. plans to self-publish a book about Joe Biden, timed for the Republican convention.

Vogue considers both Too Much and Never Enough: How My Family Created the World’s Most Dangerous Man by Mary Trump (S. & S.) and The Room Where It Happened: A White House Memoir by John Bolton (S. & S.).

The Guardian features Anne Applebaum, Twilight of Democracy: The Seductive Lure of Authoritarianism (Doubleday: Random House; LJ starred review). Also, an interview with Nicola Barker, The Three Button Trick and Other Stories (Ecco: Harper). Lastly, an interview with Naomi Klein, On Fire: The (Burning) Case for a Green New Deal (S. & S; LJ starred review).

HuffPost interviews Diane Cardwell, Rockaway: Surfing Headlong into a New Life (HMH).

The NYT asks Andy Mulvihill, Action Park: Fast Times, Wild Rides, and the Untold Story of America's Most Dangerous Amusement Park (Penguin), to share five things about his book.

The Atlantic features Ghosting the News: Local Journalism and the Crisis of American Democracy by Margaret Sullivan (Columbia Global Reports).

USA Today has a feature on Colin Jost, A Very Punchable Face: A Memoir (Crown: Random House).

After “A Letter on Justice and Open Debate” ran in Harper’s, there is now a response letter on The Objective, entitled “A More Specific Letter on Justice and Open Debate.” The NYT reports and NPR has more as well.

Andrea Davis Pinkney has an essay entitled “No Reading, No Peace: The Power Of Black Stories Out Loud” for NPR’s summer reading focus on books for kids.

Max Brooks suggests people read Microbe Hunters by Paul de Kruif (Mariner Books: HMH). Entertainment Weekly has details.

Librarian Dawn Wacek features on NPR’s Ted Talk Radio Hour.

Locus reports that DC ended its relationship with Diamond Comic Distributors and will partner with Penguin Random House for its graphic novels and other books.

The Guardian writes about the accusations leveled at comics author Warren Ellis. Ellis responded to the accusations last month on Twitter.

Professor and author Lucius Barker has died. The NYT has an obituary.

Authors on Air

NPR’s Weekend Edition Saturday interviews David Mitchell, Utopia Avenue (Random).

PBS NewsHour talks with Lisa Lucas, the National Book Foundation’s executive director, about To Kill a Mockingbird, sixty years since it was published. The Atlantic is also covering the anniversary.

Netflix options Stephen King's short story “Mr. Harrigan's Phone” from the If It Bleeds collection. Two other stories from the collection have already been optioned. Apple Studios buys rights for Snow Blind by Ollie Masters, with Jake Gyllenhaal to star. HBO Max orders up a “DC drama set in the Gotham City police department.” Deadline reports.

The Hollywood Reporter has the Comic-Con@Home TV lineup.

Tor.com considers Netflix’s Warrior Nun, based on the comic Warrior Nun Areala by Ben Dunn.

Star Trek: Lower the Decks has a trailer. It will air on CBS All Access on Aug. 6.

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