Family & Friends, Lovers & Enemies: Last of the Pop Fiction, Sept. 2020, Pt. 4

Women's fiction (Jodi Picoult), historicals (Ronald Balson), sf/fantasy (Naomi Novik), and more chillers (Sandra Browne) wrap up the month of September

Balson, Ronald H. Eli’s Promise. St. Martin’s. Sept. 2020. 352p. ISBN 9781250271464. $27.99. CD. HISTORICAL
Winner of the National Jewish Book Award for The Girl from Berlin, Balson returns with a story spanning decades. In 1939 Poland, Eli Rosen sees his business transferred to an unscrupulous profiteer whom he may or may not then encounter selling illegal visas at a 1946 displaced persons camp. In 1965 Chicago, he starts investigating what really happened to his family. With a 60,000-copy first printing.

Billingsley, ReShonda Tate. A Little Bit of Karma. Gallery: S. & S. Sept. 2020. 288p. ISBN 9781439183588. pap. $16. CD. WOMEN’S/AFRICAN AMERICAN
In this latest from the No. 1 nationally best-selling Billingsley, power couple Shannon and Jay Lovejoy are worshiped by fans of their popular call-in radio show. But a messy divorce—and the awful and unexpected death of Jay’s mistress—put paid to everything. With a cover of Brown's Thick as Thieves 35,000-copy first printing.

Brown, Sandra. Thick as Thieves. Grand Central. Sept. 2020. 448p. ISBN 9781538751947. $28. lrg. prnt. CD. THRILLER
Did Arden Miller’s father take the money and run when he vanished 20 years ago after participating in the heist of a half million dollars, and was he responsible for the murder of one of his accomplices? With those questions in mind, Arden returns to her hometown, where the remaining thieves warily eye each other—and her.

Deveraux, Jude & Tara Sheets. Chance of a Lifetime. Mira: Harlequin. Sept. 2020. 384p. ISBN 9780778310112. $28.99; pap. ISBN 9780778309932. $17.99. WOMENS

In 1840s Ireland, heartstruck thief Liam O'Connor lures away lovely Cora from her intended, so angels send him to small-town contemporary America to right this wrong. He must convince today’s Cora, a police detective, to marry a lawyer she loves—or Liam will be damned for eternity. With a 150,000-copy paperback and 10,000-copy hardcover first printing.

Florio, Gwen. Best Laid Plans. Severn House. Sept. 2020. ISBN 9780727890245. $28.99. MYSTERY
Having abandoned plans to tour America in an Airstream trailer with her husband after she discovers him in flagrante delicto with her best friend, Nora ends up on her own at a Wyoming campsite, where her troubles get worse. With blood everywhere, she is accused of murder. From the award-winning author of Montana.

Jin Yong. A Snake Lies Waiting: The Definitive Edition. St. Martin’s. tr. from Chinese by Anna Holmwood. Sept. 2020. 554p. ISBN 9781250220660. $30.99; pap. ISBN 9781250250124. $17.99. FANTASY
Next in the “Legend of Condor Heroes” series, a Chinese fantasy classic, this saga sees hero Guo Jing falling into a trap when he goes to meet sweetheart Lotus Huang’s apothecary father. He’s sent forth on a voyage with two friends in leaky boat, then confronts a martial arts master bent on revenge.

Lemmie, Asha. Fifty Words for Rain. Dutton. Sept. 2020. 464p. ISBN 9781524746360. $26. HISTORICAL
Daughter of a married Japanese aristocrat and her African American GI lover, Nori struggles to seek acceptance in post–World War II Japan, even as she is hidden away in the attic of her grandparents’ imperial estate and forced to take chemical baths to lighten her skin. The arrival of her half-brother provides her with an unexpected ally. In-house excitement over this debut.

Lyons, Annie. The Brilliant Death of Eudora Honeysett. Morrow. Sept. 2020. 272p. ISBN 9780063026063. $26.99. lrg. prnt. FRIENDSHIP
At 85, Eudora Honeysett has lived a full life and is ready to end it all. Then she meets sparkly ten-year-old Rose Trewidney, and they have a slew of adventures (afternoon tea, beach parties) as Rose awaits the birth of a sister and Eudora recalls losing her father to World War II while facing death herself. With a 100,000-copy first printing.

McKinlay, Jenn. One for the Books. (A Library Lover’s Mystery, Bk. 11). Berkley. Sept. 2020. 304p. ISBN 9780593101742. $26. MYSTERY
Library director Lindsey Norris is getting married to boat captain Mike (Sully) Sulivan, but there’s a hitch: she and her friends are scouting out Bell Island as a wedding locale when they find a body tossed up by the waves—and it’s the justice of the peace who was going to perform the ceremony.

Mayor, Archer. The Orphan's Guilt: A Joe Gunther Novel. Minotaur: St. Martin’s. Sept. 2020. 304p. ISBN 9781250224149. $27.99. MYSTERY
Back with the New York Times best-selling Vermont Bureau of Investigation team, Joe Gunther must handle a drunk-driving charge that has spun into something entirely different. The guy’s lawyer looks into the recent death of the accused’s younger brother from medical issues tracing back to shaken baby syndrome decades earlier. And that’s murder.

Morrow, Bradford. The Forger’s Daughter. Mysterious: Grove Atlantic. Sept. 2020. 288p. ISBN 9780802149251. $26. MYSTERY
The founding editor of Conjunctions, Morrow follows up his LibraryReads-crowned literary mystery, The Forgers. Here, former literary sleight-of-hand man Will compelled by old colleague Henry Slader to create a convincing replica of Edgar Allan Poe’s Tamerlane, of which only a dozen copies have survived. Daughter Nicole contributes her artistic talents. Watch for Poe events in New York, Philadelphia, Richmond, VA, and more.

Novik, Naomi. A Deadly Education. Del Rey: Ballantine. Sept. 2020. 320p. ISBN 9780593128480. $27. Downloadable. FANTASY
In this latest from New York Times best-selling Novik, author of the Nebula and Hugo finalist Spinning Silver, a reluctant dark sorceress is about to change the world of magic. Meanwhile, she’s aiming simply to survive the Scholomance and knock off the hero-worshiped Orion Lake, who has dared to save her life not once but twice.

Palahniuk, Chuck. The Invention of Sound. Grand Central. Sept. 2020. 256p. ISBN 9781538718001. $27. LITERARY HORROR
Even as Gates Foster searches for daughter Lucy, who vanished 17 years ago, Mitzi Ives perfects the techniques that have allowed her to become Hollywood’s leading expert in creating sounds reverberant with violence and horror. Soon they’re readying themselves to reveal Hollywood’s darkest secret, which itself reveals the double-edged power of art.

Picoult, Jodi. The Book of Two Ways. Ballantine. Sept. 2020. 432p. ISBN 9781984818355. $28.99. CD. WOMEN’S
On a plane about to crash-land, Dawn Edelstein finds herself thinking not about her husband but about Wayne Armstrong, whose work as an archaeologist unearthing ancient burial sites was something she had aspired to as well. On the ground, she’s offered transportation to the location of her choice and must decide whether to head home or head for Egypt to reconnect with Wayne and perhaps pick up her research on a book mapping the afterlife. With side-by-side plots.

Sparks, Nicholas. The Return. Grand Central. Sept. 2020. 368p. ISBN 9781538728574. $28. lrg. prnt. CD. ROMANCE
Left with grievous injuries from a mortar blast outside his hospital in Afghanistan, orthopedic surgeon Trevor Benson returns to heal at his grandfather’s cabin in New Bern, NC. There he falls for cautious Natalie Masterson and tries to help misfit teenage Callie, who might be able to clarify the strange circumstances around his grandfather’s death.

Tredlowe, Emily Gray. The Talented Miss Farwell. Morrow. Sept. 2020. 352p. ISBN 9780062897725. $26.99. lrg. prnt. SUSPENSE
In small-town Pierson, IL, soft-spoken Miss Farwell wears sensible shoes and deftly manages the town’s tight finances. In Manhattan, she’s an art collector with a killer instinct. How does she manage? Is there something about the town revenues that townsfolk don’t know? From the author of Blue Stars; with a 100,000-copy first printing.

Valdes, Valerie. Prime Deceptions. Harper Voyager. Sept. 2020. 416p. ISBN 9780062877253. pap. $16.99. SF/SPACE OPERA
Capt. Eva Innocente and the crew of La Sirena Negra are back, picking up where LJ Debut of the Month Chilling Effects left off. Now they have a new job, reluctantly taken on by Eva owing to war raging secretly over the universe: find a missing scientist. At least it’s a good cause.

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