'The Soulmate Equation' by Christina Lauren Tops Holds Lists | Book Pulse

The Soulmate Equation by Christina Lauren leads holds this week. Two LibraryReads and three IndieNext picks publish this week. The June issue of Entertainment Weekly arrives with the “Summer Books Special.” People's book of the week is The Plot by Jean Hanff Korelitz, which also gets reviewed. The Hachette Group releases a diversity update for 2020. The British Book Awards were announced with Hamnet by Maggie O'Farrell, Troubled Blood by Robert Galbraith, and Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens winning top fiction honors. Shuggie Bain by Douglas Stuart won best overall book of the year. The Ockham New Zealand Book Awards were announced, as were the 2021 Guggenheim Fellows. Plus, the Analog Award for Emerging Black Voices has launched. Finally, Evelyn Waugh’s house is on the market for $7.6M.



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Big Books of the Week

The Soulmate Equation by Christina Lauren (Gallery; LJ starred review) leads holds this week.

Other titles in demand include:

The Summer Job by Lizzy Dent (Putnam; LJ starred review)

Local Woman Missing by Mary Kubica (Park Row: Harlequin)

Where the Grass Is Green and the Girls Are Pretty by Lauren Weisberger (Random House)

The Hunting Wives by May Cobb (Berkley: LJ starred review)

These books and others publishing the week of May 17th, 2021 are listed in a downloadable spreadsheet.

Librarians and Booksellers Suggest

There are two LibraryReads selections and three Indie Next picks publishing this week:

The Soulmate Equation by Christina Lauren (Gallery; LJ starred review)

“A statistician and geneticist are an unlikely match in a DNA-based dating app in this latest breezy romance from Lauren. What follows is sure to pull on readers’ heartstrings and even get them interested in the science of genetics.” —Melissa Stumpe, Johnson County Public Library, Franklin, IN

It is also an IndieNext pick: 

“I finished this in one sitting and my neck is killing me. I loved this new story from Christina Lauren, from the third-person point-of-view to the mix of science and romance! It was perfect, from every last side character to the sexual tension between the mains —Blair Boles, Beausoleil Books, Lafayette, LA

Local Woman Missing by Mary Kubica (Park Row: Harlequin)

“A kidnapped child, two dead women, affairs, secrets, and a malpractice suit seem like a lot to pack into one book, but Kubica skillfully weaves the plot to create a perfect level of intrigue in this twisty suspense tale.” —Sandra Woodbury, Burlington Public Library, Burlington MA

It is also an IndieNext pick: 

“Mary Kubica’s best one yet! The first chapter of this book had my heart pounding. I enjoyed trying to solve the multiple mysteries throughout all of the twists and turns, without being able to put it all together until the very end. A thrilling and satisfying read.”—Mary Salazar, The Country Bookshop, Southern Pines, NC

One additional Indie Next pick arrives this week:

 Unsettled Ground by Claire Fuller (Tin House; LJ starred review):

“Another fantastic story from Claire Fuller, whose novels are full of depth and insight. Unsettled Ground reveals a complex relationship between a mother and her twin adult children, and the secrets that push them to the very edge of existence. I can’t recommend her enough!” —Julie Slavinsky, Warwick’s, La Jolla, CA


In the Media

The June issue of Entertainment Weekly arrives. Book coverage includes the “Summer Books Special” featuring The Wreckage of My Presence by Casey Wilson (Harper), While Justice Sleeps by Stacey Abrams (Doubleday), and Animal by Lisa Taddeo (Avid Reader: S. & S). Other mentions include the memoirs Competitive Grieving by Nora Zelevansky (Blackstone) and This Will All Be Over Soon by Cecily Strong (S. & S.), along with the thrillers Falling by TJ Newman (S. & S.) and Impostor Syndrome by Kathy Wang (Custom House). “Dazzling Debuts” include: Punch Me Up to the Gods by Brian Broome (Houghton Harcourt; LJ starred review), Somebody's Daughter by Ashley C. Ford (Flatiron: An Oprah Book), Nobody, Somebody, Anybody by Kelly McClorey (Ecco), Ace of Spades by Faridah Àbíké-Íyímídé (Feiwel & Friends), and Objects of Desire by Clare Sestanovich (Knopf). “Bold-Name Reads” include: Dear Senthuran: A Black Spirit Memoir by Akwaeke Emezi (Riverhead), The Turnout by Megan Abbott (Putnam; LJ starred review), and While We Were Dating by Jasmine Guillory (Berkley). "Heavy Hitters" include: Hell of a Book by Jason Mott (Dutton) and All’s Well by Mona Awad (S. & S.). Pride Season’s “6 Essential Reads” include Punch Me Up to the Gods by Brian Broome (Houghton Harcourt; LJ starred review), Yes, Daddy by Jonathan Parks-Ramage (Houghton Harcourt), One Last Stop by Casey McQuiston (St. Martin’s Griffin), With Teeth by Kristen Arnett (Riverhead), Dear Senthuran: A Black Spirit Memoir by Akwaeke Emezi (Riverhead), and Hola Papi: How to Come Out in a Walmart Parking Lot and Other Life Lessons by John Paul Brammer (S. & S.).

The “Author Spotlight” is on Silvia Moreno-Garcia, Velvet Was The Night (Del Rey). Critics’ Picks include Afterparties by Anthony Veasna So (Ecco), In the Country of Others by Leila Slimani (Penguin), and The Great Mistake by Jonathan Lee (Knopf).

There are Q&A’s with Billie Eilish, Billie Eilish (Grand Central), Zakiya Dalila Harris, The Other Black Girl (Atria), and Gabrielle Union and Dwayne Wade, Shady Baby (HarperCollins). Plus, a conversation between Taylor Jenkins Reid, Malibu Rising (Ballantine) and Paula Hawkins, A Slow Fire Burning (Riverhead). On the June “Must List” are Day Zero by C. Robert Cargill (Harper Voyager), Milestone Returns #0: Infinite Edition (DC Comics), and Brat: An ’80s Story by Andrew McCarthy (Grand Central).

A special “All (Cook)Booked Up” section highlights Pizza Czar: Recipes and Know-How from a World-Traveling Pizza Chef by Anthony Falco (Abrams), Linda McCartney's Family Kitchen by Linda, Paul, Stella & Mary McCartney (Little, Brown & Co), Dada Eats Love to Cook It by Samah Dada (Rodale; LJ starred review), Bavel: Modern Recipes Inspired by the Middle East by Ori Menashe, Genevieve Gergis, and Lesley Suter (Ten Speed Press), Sea Salt and Honey: Celebrating the Food of Kardamili in 100 Sun-Drenched Recipes by Nicholas Tsakiris & others (Harper Design), What’s Good? by Peter Hoffman (Abrams), We Are What We Eat by Alice Waters (Penguin Pr.) and The Coffee Book by Anette Moldvaer (DK: Random House).

The “Summer TV Preview” spotlights Sweet Tooth (Netflix), based on the comic book series by Jeff Lemire, American Rust (Showtime), based on the book by Philipp Meyer, Sex/Life (Netflix) based on the book 44 Chapters About 4 Men by BB Easton (Forever), Bosch (Amazon Prime Video), based on the series by Michael Connelly and Marvel Studios’ What If….? (Disney+) with associated titles. There is a Q&A with Julianne Moore, star of Lisey’s Story, based on the book by Stephen King who also wrote the adaptation. The Woman in the Window, based on the book by A.J. Finn is featured in the Movies section, and Amazon’s The Underground Railroad, based on the novel by Colson Whitehead is featured in the TV section.

In People, the book of the week is The Plot by Jean Hanff Korelitz (Celadon). Also getting attention are The Wreckage of My Presence by Casey Wilson (Harper) and How Lucky by Will Leitch (Harper). A “New in Nonfiction" section highlights State of Emergency: How We Win in the Country We Built by Tamika D. Mallory (Atria: Black Privilege), Man Enough: Undefining My Masculinity by Justin Baldoni (HarperOne), and You're Invited: The Art and Science of Cultivating Influence by Jon Levy (Harper Business). The “Travel Pick” is Take More Vacations: How To Search Better, Book Cheaper, and Travel the World by Scott Keyes (Harper Wave). The “Picks” section includes Amazon’s The Underground Railroad, based on the novel by Colson Whitehead and HBO’s Those Who Wish Me Dead, based on the book by Michael Kortya. Also, there is a profile of Chris Ruden, The Upper Hand: Leveraging Limitations to Turn Adversity in to Advantage (Blue Moon).


NPR reviews The Plot by Jean Hanff Korelitz (Celadon): “It might be, from a writer of Korelitz's talent, that I wanted and expected a more fiendish and psychologically driven book. Instead, this Plot falls flat.” The Washington Post also reviews: “so ingenious that it should be assigned as required reading in the very MFA programs it pinions, both as a model of superior narrative construction and as a warning of the grim realities of the literary life to naive wannabe writers.” And, The Rock Eaters by Brenda Peynado (Penguin): “conjures both the playful sorcery of Kelly Link and the haunted atmosphere of Kali Fajardo-Anstine. But in her search for meaning in the immigrant experience — and the borderlands of emotion, possibility, and belonging — she populates a dimension all her own.” Also, Sorrowland by Rivers Solomon (MCD: Macmillan): “If anything, nearly every issue I had with this book comes from the places where I wanted more — more of Solomon hitting us with the truth, with the highs and lows of Vern's four years on the run.”

The NYT reviews Why Peacocks? An Unlikely Search for Meaning in the World’s Most Magnificent Bird by Sean Flynn (S. & S): “The writing is often witty, sometimes glorious (a peacock’s train ‘expands as it rises, falling open like a Spanish fan’), and his tales wry and charming.”  Also, Freedom by Sebastian Junger (S. & S.): “These lines have a lovely roll, the tone is heroic — they made Amish country by winter. But basic information is withheld, or only obliquely shared much, much later. Who are the members of this westbound party? What is their purpose? We are never told.” Lastly, Zero Fail: The Rise and Fall of the Secret Service by Carol Leonnig (Random House): “This book is a wake-up call, and a valuable study of a critically important agency. The Secret Service needs adequate resources, competent leadership and respect. It is, after all, the thin line between the president and disaster.” 

The Washington Post also reviews Zero Fail: The Rise and Fall of the Secret Service: “an important book, one that will ruffle feathers in need of ruffling and that will be useful to legislators, policymakers and historians alike.” And, The Words That Made Us by Akhil Reed Amar (Basic; LJ starred review): “the rarest of things — a constitutional romance. Amar, an eminent professor of law and political science at Yale, has great affection for his subject as a text that is worthy of loving engagement by scholars and the public at large.”  Also, E. O. Wilson: Biophilia, The Diversity of Life, Naturalist by Edward O. Wilson (Library of America): “there is no writer more authoritative, nor any more eloquent, to speak about the natural world. Fortuitous, because the timing could not be more opportune as we emerge from an acute crisis to face other, more chronic ones.” And, The Gun, the Ship, and the Pen: Warfare, Constitutions, and the Making of the Modern World by Linda Colley (Liveright: Norton): “One of the great strengths of Colley’s book is her focus on experiments that occurred outside Euro-America.”

The LA Times reviews Phase Six by Jim Shepard (Knopf): “If you can bear to read one pandemic dystopia in 2021, this should probably be it.”

Briefly Noted

USA Today picks five books for the week.

CrimeReads suggests 10 books out this week.

The Hachette Group releases a diversity update for 2020. Publishing Perspectives has more.

The British Book Awards were announced with Hamnet by Maggie O'Farrell (Knopf), Troubled Blood by Robert Galbraith (Mulholland Books: Hachette), and Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens (G.P. Putnam’s Sons) winning top fiction honors. Shuggie Bain by Douglas Stuart (Grove; LJ starred review) won best overall book of the year. The Bookseller has a complete list of winners.

The Ockham New Zealand Book Awards were announced.

The 2021 Guggenheim Fellows were announced.

Analog has announced the launch of the Analog Award for Emerging Black VoicesLocus has details.

Oprah Daily talks with Stacey Abrams, While Justice Sleeps (Doubleday) about writing, representation, and The Nobel Peace Prize.

Entertainment Weekly interviews Brenda Peynado, The Rock Eaters (Penguin) about reading, writing, and her new story collection. Also EW talks with Billie Eilish on putting her new book Billie Eilish (Grand Central) together.

The Guardian has an interview with Nobel Prize winner Daniel Kahneman, Noise: A Flaw in Human Judgment (Little, Brown Spark) about the pandemic, AI, and massive disruption. Also, an interview with Leigh Bardugo, on Netflix, Shadow and Bone, and making her novels more diverse.

Alexander Chee writes about what his Korean father taught him at GQ.

The Washington Post discusses African speculative fiction and recommends titles. 

In literary real estate news, “Evelyn Waugh’s twelve-bedroom house—complete with party barn—is now for sale.” LitHub has the listing.

Writer Jan Stirling, 71, best known for her Terion & Feric stories died May 8, 2021. Locus reports.

Katherine Barber, founding editor of the Canadian Oxford Dictionary, has died at 61.The NYT has an obituary.

Authors on Air

NPR’s Weekend Edition Sunday interviews Andrew McCarthy, Brat: An ’80s Story (Grand Central) on fame, alcohol, and John Hughes.

NPR’s Pop Culture Happy Hour calls The Underground Railroad  “a brutal yet beautiful ride.”

NPR interviews Zen Cho, Black Water Sister (Ace: Berkley).

CBS Sunday Morning interviews Carol LeonnigZero Fail: The Rise and Fall of the Secret Service (Random House), and Avi Loeb, Extraterrestrial: The First Sign of Intelligent Life Beyond Earth (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt), about UFO studies.

People has a feature on Kelly Oxford, writer and director of Pink Skies Ahead, based on her own panic disorder. Also, a dive into the controversy surrounding The Woman in the Window, based on the book by A.J. Finn, and its long road to Netflix.

Cindy McCain Stronger: Courage, Hope, and Humor In My Life With John McCain (Forum: Penguin Random House), will be on The Late Show tonight and Julianna Margulies, Sunshine Girl: An Unexpected Life (Ballantine) will be on Late Night with Seth Meyers.


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