Best Books from the NYT, NYPL, & CPL, Nov. 26, 2019 | Book Pulse

The NYT selects its 100 Notable Books of 2019. The New York Public Library and the Chicago Public Library each pick their best books of the year. Entertainment Weekly names A Visit From the Goon Squad by Jennifer Egan the best novel of the decade.

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Best Books







The NYT selects its “100 Notable Books of 2019.” Categories cover comics/graphics, fiction, memoir, nonfiction, poetry, stories, and thrillers.

Time names “The 10 Best YA and Children's Books of 2019.”

Kirkus selects the best Middle-Grade books of 2019 (the full list of categories is here; YA, Nonfiction, and Indie picks are still yet to come).

The New York Public Library and The Chicago Public Library each pick their best books of 2019. The NYT writes about the NYPL lists, and how, for the first time, there is a category for best children’s books in Spanish.

Entertainment Weekly names the best novels of the decade. A Visit From the Goon Squad by Jennifer Egan (Knopf) is the top pick. EW explains why.


The NYT reviews Labyrinth by Burhan Sönmez, translated by Umit Hussein (Other Press: Random House): “provocative … We’re confused, too, and uneasy, and haunted. But we’re meant to be.” Also, Disney's Land: Walt Disney and the Invention of the Amusement Park That Changed the World by Richard Snow (Scribner: S. & S.): “an expert inspection … primarily a construction saga, albeit a highly readable one set in an anxious nation that didn’t know it needed Disneyland until Walt provided it.” The Cartiers: The Untold Story of the Family Behind the Jewelry Empire by Francesca Cartier Brickell (Ballantine: Random House): “elevating this from a company story to a human story — one even the unadorned will read with pleasure.” The Depositions: New and Selected Essays on Being and Ceasing to Be by Thomas Lynch (W.W. Norton): “you will be grateful for these graceful essays.” Janis: Her Life and Music by Holly George-Warren (S. & S.; LJ starred review): “the significance-establishing project Joplin appreciators have been waiting for.” Tiny Love: The Complete Stories by Larry Brown (Algonquin: Workman: “blunt and brilliant.” The “New and Noteworthy” column is out.

The Washington Post reviews The Story of a Goat by Perumal Murugan, translated by N Kalyan Raman (Grove Press, Black Cat): “jumps nimbly from fantasy to realism to parable … The effect is not so much escapist fantasy as existential reflection.”

NPR reviews Confessions of a Dork Lord by Mike Johnston, illustrated by Marta Altés (G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers): “Wick is who Harry Potter would be if Harry Potter were a real kid, and that's the appeal … the epic journey of being "okay" can be a lot more riveting than the epic journey of a hero.”

Briefly Noted

O: The Oprah Magazine selects “10 Books to Give as Gifts This Holiday Season.”

Popsugar collects “15 Christmas Books to Read If You Can't Get Enough Holiday Cheer.” supplies “All the New Fantasy Books Coming out in December.”

In LJ, Barbara Hoffert’s “Prepub Alert” covers June 2020.

CrimeReads suggests “25 (More) Crime Books You Can Finish in an Afternoon."

In forthcoming books news, Entertainment Weekly reports that Nnedi Okorafor will publish a middle-grade novel. It will be titled Ikenga and come out on Aug. 18, 2020.

Intelligencer spotlights Ta-Nehisi Coates.

Bitch Media interviews Feminista Jones, Reclaiming Our Space: How Black Feminists Are Changing the World from the Tweets to the Streets (Beacon Press: Random House; LJ starred review).

People showcases Ian McKellen: A Biography by Garry O’Connor (St. Martin’s: Macmillan).

Mental Floss features Bowie's Bookshelf: The Hundred Books that Changed David Bowie's Life by John O’Connell (Gallery Books: S. & S.).

Electric Lit writes “You Should Be Getting Your Biographies in Children’s Picture Book Form.”

The NYT prints a poem by Alison Rollins, Library of Small Catastrophes (Copper Canyon Press), as selected by Naomi Shihab Nye. Rollins is a librarian as well as a poet.

Entertainment Weekly surveys the book award season.

LitHub has another of its occasional series on the making of a book cover.

The New York Review of Books considers “The Heroines of America’s Black Press.”

Half of Shakespeare's 'Henry VIII' was written by another playwright, a new analysis shows.” CNN has details.

Authors on Air

PBS NewsHour interviews David M. Rubenstein, The American Story: Conversations with Master Historians (S. & S.). Sales are soaring.

Deadline reports that Godzilla vs. Kong is now set to open on Nov. 20, 2020. It is not based on a book, but there are associated works. The adaptation of Oliver Twist, Twist, will premiere in the US in early 2021. Stacey Abrams’s Never Tell is set for TV. Anne With An E will end after season three on Netflix. Derek Owusu’s Teaching My Brother To Read is getting adapted by Idris Elba’s production company.

In more forthcoming adaptation news, BuzzFeed has a list of YA novels on the way to screens and looks at SFF adapations.

Bustle offers “12 Books Like 'Knives Out' For Fans Of Family Sagas, Murder, & Knitwear.”

The Today show features Michael Eric Dyson’s Jay-Z: Made in America (St. Martin’s: Macmillan; LJ starred review) and Crime in Progress: Inside the Steele Dossier and the Fusion GPS Investigation of Donald Trump by Glenn Simpson, Peter Fritsch (Random House).

Andrew Yang, The War on Normal People: The Truth About America's Disappearing Jobs and Why Universal Basic Income Is Our Future (Hachette), will be on with Jimmy Kimmel tonight and Sen. Bernie Sanders, Where We Go from Here: Two Years in the Resistance (A Thomas Dunne Book for St. Martin's Griffin: Macmillan) will be on with Jimmy Fallon. Michael Symon, Fix It with Food : More Than 125 Recipes to Address Autoimmune Issues and Inflammation: A Cookbook (Clarkson Potter: Random House), will be on Live with Kelly and Ryan. gathers the three new Star Wars: Rise of Skywalker clips.

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