Laughing While Reading, June 11, 2019 | Book Pulse

NPR's Summer Reading Poll focuses on funny books. LJ posts Day of Dialog reports, including Editor's Picks; also a BookCon report. Mindy Kaling says that Marvel might adapt Ms. Marvel. Dune heads back to TV. University of Pittsburgh creates a Horror Studies Center.

Want to get the latest book news delivered to your inbox each day? Sign up for our daily Book Pulse newsletter.

Laughing While Reading

After curating lists on horror, comics, and romance, NPR turns its attention to funny books. The 2019 Summer Reader Poll will focus on books that make readers laugh. Alexandra Petri, Samantha Irby, Aparna Nancherla, and Guy Branum will curate the final list of 100 titles. The poll is open now for suggestions.

If the list prompts a need to get reading, Less by Andrew Sean Greer (Lee Boudreaux Books: Hachette; LJ starred review) won the Pulitzer in 2018, prompting The Washington Post to write that it is “funny. Very funny. Laugh-till-you-can’t-breathe funny.” Also, Nina Stibbe won the 2019 Bollinger Everyman Wodehouse Prize for Comic Fiction for Reasons to Be Cheerful (Little, Brown: Hachette), which publishes in the U.S. on July 23. The prize famously comes with a huge bottle of Bollinger Special Cuvée and rare breed pig.


Curtis Sittenfeld reviews The Body in Question by Jill Ciment (Pantheon: Random House) for the NYT: “short and brisk, propelled by the suspense of multiple questions.” Also reviewed in the paper, The Capital by Robert Menasse, translated by Jamie Bulloch (Liveright: W.W. Norton): “If you tasked an excellent writer with turning a tall stack of recent issues of The Economist into a novel, you might get “The Capital.” Somehow I mean this as high praise.” Where We Come From by Oscar Cásares (Knopf): “beautifully shows us that anyone can become part of a family and that where you come from is “nothing more than that” — where you come from. It isn’t where your story ends.” The Ditch by Herman Koch (Hogarth: Random House): "his interest in the so-called “other” is strictly limited to his literary gamesmanship."

USA Today reviews Mrs. Everything by Jennifer Weiner (Atria: S. & S.), giving it three stars and writing “Weiner expands her scope beyond a singular era and woman’s experience to a larger narrative of the lives of two women born in the 1940s.”

The Washington Post reviews The Electric Hotel by Dominic Smith (Sarah Crichton Books: Macmillan): “If you’re looking for a worthy summer reading binge … engrossing.” Also, Migraine by Katherine Foxhall (Johns Hopkins Univ.): “a thorough and illuminating history.” The Porpoise by Mark Haddon (Doubleday: Random House; LJ starred review): “terrifically exciting … so riveting that I found myself constantly pining to fall back into its labyrinth of swashbuckling adventure and feminist resistance.”

Book Conference News







LJ posts summaries of Day of Dialog, including write ups of the book panels and Editor’s Picks. LJ also has highlights from BookCon. Don’t forget you can now sign up for LJ’s ALA Galley & Signing Guide for ALA Annual too.

Briefly Noted

Paste selects “10 of the Best Young Adult Books of June 2019.”

The L.A. Times has “buzzworthy June books.”

Bustle gathers “26 New Poetry Collections By LGBTQIA+ Writers To Look Out For In 2019,” “25 New Erotic Romance Novels To Spice Up Your Summer Reading List,” “7 Books About Female Assassins, Because It Doesn't Begin & End With Villanelle," and a booklist for Booksmart.

Book Marks gathers “Five Great Novels of Italian-American Immigration.”

LitHub has “Essential Bookselling Reads.”

Electric Lit showcases Build Yourself a Boat by Camonghne Felix (Haymarket Books).

O magazine features How to Skimm Your Life by The Skimm (Ballantine: Random House).

The Atlantic considers Diary of a Murderer: And Other Stories by Young-ha Kim, translated by Krys Lee (Mariner: HMH).

Five authors, including Nicole Dennis-Benn and Domenica Ruta answer the LitHub Questionnaire.

Vulture has a timeline of Barnes & Noble.

The NYT writes about the time Agatha Christie vanished.

University of Pittsburgh is creating a Horror Studies Center. LJ reports. 

Authors on Air

Mindy Kaling says that Marvel might adapt Ms. Marvel. Entertainment Weekly explains.

NPR interviews Elaine Welteroth, More Than Enough: Claiming Space for Who You Are (No Matter What They Say) (Viking: Penguin). Also, NPR’s The Salt interviews Ella Risbridger, Midnight Chicken: & Other Recipes Worth Living For (Bloomsbury: Macmillan).

A new TV series is in the works, Dune: The Sisterhood, based on Frank Herbert’s Dune and its spin-offs. Abdi Nazemian’s Like a Love Story gets optioned. Deadline Hollywood has details.

Harlequin has launched Harlequin Studios, to create Harlequin-branded movies. The details broke via press release.

Kwame Onwuachi, Notes from a Young Black Chef: A Memoir (Knopf), will be on The Daily Show.

Jon Meacham and Tim McGraw, Songs of America: Patriotism, Protest, and the Music That Made a Nation (Random House), will be on with Stephen Colbert tonight. They will be on The View today.

Want to get the latest book news delivered to your inbox each day? Sign up for our daily Book Pulse newsletter.

Be the first reader to comment.

Comment Policy:
  • Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  • Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  • Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.
  • Comments may be republished in print, online, or other forms of media.
  • If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.




Kids are using VR to explore worlds and create new ones


Kids are using VR to explore worlds and create new ones


Kids are using VR to explore worlds and create new ones

Get connected. Join our global community of more than 200,000 librarians and educators.

Get access to 8000+ annual reviews of books, ebooks, and more

As low as $13.50/month