Making History, Jun. 19, 2019 | Book Pulse

Elizabeth Acevedo and Joy Harjo make history. Amazon picks the best books of the year so far. LibraryReads picks its books for July. CrimeReads picks debuts thrillers and crime books. Elin Hilderbrand shines.

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Making History







Elizabeth Acevedo wins the UK’s most prestigious children’s books award, the Carnegie medal, for The Poet X (HarperTeen; SLJ starred review). It is a history making moment as Acevedo is the first author of color to win the prize. The Guardian reports.

The Kate Greenaway award goes to The Lost Words by Robert Macfarlane, illustrated by Jackie Morris (Anansi International). Here is a link to the award site with both shortlists.

Joy Harjo has been appointed the 23rd United States Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry. She too makes history as the first Native American poet to fill the post. NPR has a feature.


The NYT reviews The Capital by Robert Menasse, translated by Jamie Bulloch (Liveright: W.W. Norton): “works mostly as a testament to the persistence of personal and nationalist ambitions rather than supranational ones, another bad omen for the poor E.U.” Also, through a double review, the paper reintroduces Natalia Ginzburg, “One of the Great Italian Writers of the 20th Century.”

USA Today reviews FKA USA by Reed King (Flatiron Books: Macmillan), giving it two stars and writing, “Richly textured but curiously shapeless … a wander through a strange and fascinating future, nudged along by weak currents of story.”

NPR reviews The Accident of Color: A Story of Race in Reconstruction by Daniel Brook ( W. W. Norton): “a book that goes a long way toward injecting thoughtfulness into popular notions of the history of race and racism in America, but he also doesn't go far enough.” The Porpoise by Mark Haddon (Doubleday: Random House; LJ starred review): “a rich, beautiful read. Its shortcomings are masked by Haddon's dazzling use of language and talent for describing action and feelings. It's a rough, bizarre, magical journey, and readers will not come out of it untouched.”

Briefly Noted

Amazon picks the “Best books of the year so far.” City of Girls by Elizabeth Gilbert (Riverhead: Penguin) tops the list.

The July LibraryReads list is out. The Bookish Life of Nina Hill by Abbi Waxman (Berkley: Penguin) is the top pick.

CrimeReads picks “June’s Best Debut Thrillers and Crime Novels.”

The Cut writes about “How Elin Hilderbrand Became the ‘Queen of Beach Reads’.”

The NYT reports on a legal finding regarding the Sandy Hook Elementary School shootings and a book that maintained the massacre was staged.

The NYT features Mona Awad, Bunny (Viking: Penguin), in its “One Good Meal” column; she shares a “virtuous cookie” recipe.

USA Today features the Try Guys, The Hidden Power of F*cking Up: The Hidden Power of F***ing Up (Dey Street: Harper).

LitHub ’s “Secrets of the Book Critics” column highlights Amal El-Mohtar.

Salon interviews Michael Wolff, Siege: Trump Under Fire (Henry Holt: Macmillan).

Entertainment Weekly interviews Catherine Chung, The Tenth Muse (Ecco: Harper). Also, an interview with Karen Kilgariff and Georgia Hardstark, Stay Sexy & Don't Get Murdered: The Definitive How-To Guide (Forge Books: Macmillan).

PBS NewsHour writes about how N.K. Jemisin finds that “‘sometimes it is necessary’ to traumatize readers, especially when writing a book about oppression.”

BuzzFeed excerpts Flash Count Diary: Menopause and the Vindication of Natural Life by Darcey Steinke (Sarah Crichton Books: Macmillan). The Atlantic features Steinke in their “By Heart” series.

Paste excerpts Ruthless Gods by Emily A. Duncan (Wednesday Books: Macmillan).

In forthcoming book news Bustle features Verge: Stories by Lidia Yuknavitch (Riverhead: Penguin). Also, Town & Country reports on HRH: So Many Thoughts by Elizabeth Holmes (Celadon: Macmillan). The AP writes that Frank Bennack Jr., the former head of Hearst, is writing a business book, Leave Something on the Table and Other Surprising Lessons for Success in Business and in Life (S. & S, Oct.).

Publishers Weekly reports on Hachette’s changes to library e-book terms. LJ has ALA's response.

Hilary Sloin has died. Lamdba Literary has an obituary.

Authors on Air

Gerard de Villiers’ S.A.S. series is headed to the movies with Michael Fassbender to star in and produce. Screen rights to Adrian McKinty’s The Chain have sold for a “low-seven-figure[s]. The Most Dangerous Man by Bill Minutaglio and Steven L. Davis is getting adapted with Woody Harrelson attached to the project. Deadline Hollywood reports.

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Neal Wyatt

Neal Wyatt is LJ’s readers’ advisory columnist, contributing The Reader’s Shelf, Book Pulse, and Wyatt’s World columns. She is the coauthor of The Readers’ Advisory Guide to Genre Fiction, 3d ed. (ALA Editions, 2019). Contact her at

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