Run Your Week: Big Books, Sure Bets, & Titles Making News | Book Pulse

The High Tide Club by Mary Kay Andrews leads holds this week. Junot Díaz has been accused of sexual harassment. Vanity Fair speculates that one year may not be long enough to fix the problems underpinning the Nobel Prize in Literature.

Big Books for the Week

The High Tide Club by Mary Kay Andrews (St. Martin’s: Macmillan) leads holds this week.

Other titles in demand include:

The Crooked Staircase: A Jane Hawk Novel by Dean Koontz (Bantam: Random)

The Other Lady Vanishes by Amanda Quick (Berkley: Penguin; LJ starred review)

Warlight by Michael Ondaatje (Knopf)

Barracoon: The Story of the Last “Black Cargo by Zora Neale Hurston (Amistad: Harper)

The Soul of America: The Battle for Our Better Angels by Jon Meacham (Random)

That Kind of Mother by Rumaan Alam (Ecco)

Librarians and Booksellers Suggest

Two LibraryReads selections publish this week:

The Other Lady Vanishes by Amanda Quick (Berkley: Penguin; LJ starred review)
“Historical romantic suspense. Who would suspect that the quiet California seaside tea shop waitress is actually an escaped mental patient? The second book in Quick’s Burning Cove series has the same 1930s vibe and glamorous, gossipy Hollywood ambiance as The Girl Who Knew Too Much.” —Beth Mills, New Rochelle Public Library, New Rochelle, NY

Our Kind of Cruelty by Araminta Hall (MCD: Macmillan)
“Disturbing psychological suspense with an unreliable narrator. This is a love story. Or is it? It’s more a story of obsession.” —Jennifer Ohzourk, St. Louis Public Library, St. Louis, MO

Two Indie Next picks hit shelves too:

Warlight by Michael Ondaatje (Knopf)
“With his usual virtuosity, master storyteller Michael Ondaatje delivers a mysterious, shimmering new coming-of-age novel. Warlight is the unexpected story of two teenagers abandoned by their enigmatic parents in post-war London. Casually watched over by a dodgy cast of characters — petty criminals, opera singers, and panting greyhounds — Nathaniel and Rachel try to make sense of their new world while struggling to define their parents’ shadowy wartime pasts. Years later, Nathaniel embarks on a quest to discover the disturbing truth, and his own unwitting part in it. Balancing poignance with surprising comic touches, Warlight is a stellar addition to the Ondaatje canon.” —Chrysler Szarlan, Odyssey Bookshop, South Hadley, MA

My Ex-Life by Stephen McCauley (Flatiron: Macmillan)
“This story of loves both great and small is most certainly not saccharine sweet. My Ex-Life reminds us that there is a reason for everything, and that sometimes it’s wise to go back to the familiar (albeit old) parts of ourselves to remind us just how far we’ve come. Stephen McCauley writes like your best friend — the one who always says what you’re thinking but you’d never have the guts to utter out loud. His perception of even the mundane tasks of life reveals a witty tone dripping with self deprecation and amusement. This book is most certainly one you should put at the top of your to-be-read pile!” —Jordan Arias, Anderson’s Bookshop, Naperville, IL

These books and others publishing the week of May 7, 2018, are listed in a downloadable spreadsheet: Book Pulse 5_7_18

In the Media

Motherhood by Sheila Heti (Holt: Macmillan; getting a B grade) and That Kind of Mother by Rumaan Alam (Ecco; an A-) leads book coverage in Entertainment Weekly this week. Also The Perfect Mother by Aimee Molloy (Harper; LJ starred review), called “The Perfect Thriller.” (they have an interview online). The Mars Room by Rachel Kushner (Scribner: S. & S.) gets an A-: “raw and beautiful.” There is a Q&A with David Duchovny, Miss Subways (FSG). In the buzziest books section, A Lucky Man: Stories by Jamel Brinkley (Graywolf Press: Macmillan) and Melissa Broder’s The Pisces (Hogarth) are spotlighted, along with Love and Ruin by Paula McLain (Ballantine; LJ starred review) and He by John Connolly (Quercus: Hachette). Also listed are Like Brothers by Mark Duplass and Jay Duplass (Ballantine: Random), H. Jon Benjamin’s Failure Is An Option: An Attempted Memoir (Dutton), and Marcia Gay Harden’s The Seasons of My Mother: A Memoir of Love, Family, and Flowers (Atria: S. & S.).

The documentary RBG is No. 2 on EW‘s Must List. It is not based on a book but works on Ruth Bader Ginsburg are numerous. My Ex-Life by Stephen McCauley (Flatiron: Macmillan) is No.3: “a charming slice of life.” No. 7 is the streaming of Friday Night Lights on Hulu. No. 8 is the Royal Wedding (books abound). No. 9 (and 3/4s) is a new Harry Potter game, Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery. No. 10 is the TV debut of Little Women on PBS. EW also has pieces on Gabrielle Union, the repercussions of Avengers: Infinity WarDeadpool 2, and Patrick Melrose. They offer an excerpt of Sex and the City and Us: How Four Single Women Changed the Way We Think, Live, and Love by Jennifer Keishin Armstrong (S. & S.) and provide a useful explanation of how summer movies rise and fall from May to September. Finally, making The Bullseye is Killing Eve.

People‘s Book of the Week is You Think It, I’ll Say It: Stories by Curtis Sittenfeld (Random; LJ starred review): “Perfectly paced, witty, and laced with unexpected twists.” Love and Ruin by Paula McLain (Ballantine; LJ starred review) and Beauty in the Broken Places: A Memoir of Love, Faith and Resilience by Allison Pataki (Random) are the other fiction choices. Getting brief nods are Jake Tapper’s The Hellfire Club (Little, Brown: Hachette), The Room on Rue Amélie by Kristin Harmel (Galley: S. & S.), and You Me Everything by Catherine Isaac (Pamela Dorman: Penguin).

People Picks opens with Patrick Melrose. No. 4 is RBG and in a bit of self promotion, No. 5 is The Story of Diana on DVD (again, plenty of book options to support). No. 8 is the DVD/streaming release of Black Panther.

There is a feature on Chip and Joanna Gaines; her newest book is Magnolia Table: A Collection of Recipes for Gathering by Joanna Gaines, Marah Stets (William Morrow: HarperCollins). Also covered is the Golden State Killer, which might bring even more attention to Michelle McNamara’s I’ll Be Gone in the Dark: One Woman’s Obsessive Search for the Golden State Killer (Harper). The book related summer movie coverage includes Solo: A Star Wars Story, Ant-Man and the Wasp, Deadpool 2, Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom, Crazy Rich Asians, Christopher Robin, Don’t Worry, He Won’t Get Far on Foot, and Teen Titans Go! To The Movies. In cookbooks, River Cafe London: Thirty Years of Recipes and the Story of a Much-Loved Restaurant: A Cookbook by Ruth Rogers, Sian Wyn Owen, Joseph Trivelli, and Rose Gray (Knopf) is spotlighted.


The NYT reviews The Mars Room by Rachel Kushner (Scribner: S. & S.): “It’s one of those books that enrage you even as they break your heart.”

The Washington Post posted many reviews over the weekend, including for Michael Koryta’s How It Happened (Little, Brown: Hachette; LJ starred review), calling it “ingenious” and Warlight by Michael Ondaatje (Knopf): “a quite new masterpiece.”

NPR reviews The Queen’s Embroiderer: A True Story of Paris, Lovers, Swindlers, and the First Stock Market Crisis by Joan DeJean (Bloomsbury: Macmillan), recounting a twisting family history so over the top it almost “beggar[s] belief.”

Briefly Noted

Junot Díaz is accused of sexual harassment. Vanity Fair reports he has withdrawn from a literary festival “following multiple sexual harassment claims leveled against him by female writers on Twitter.” Those writers include Carmen Maria Machado and Zinzi Clemmons. Diaz responded via a statement, reported in the NYT. NPR reports the story as well.

The news triggered a Washington Post writer, Monica Castillo, to call for a “signal boost” on Twitter to promote Latina authors. PBS’s NewsHour has the story and a list of some of the books suggested.

Vanity Fair reports on the Nobel, speculating that one year may not be long enough to fix its problems. Ron Charles of The Washington Post explains why he is fine with that.

The NYT runs an op-ed entitled “Save Barnes & Noble!

USA Today posts its 5 buzzy books for the week. Bustle picks 9.

Vulture selects “The Best Books of the Year (So Far).” The Largesse of the Sea Maiden: Stories by Denis Johnson (Random; LJ starred review) leads the list. Vulture also has a booklist for May. gathers genre-blends coming out in May.

LitHub selects books overlooked in April.

Refinery29 updates their list of “The Best Books of 2018” they cannot wait to read.

To celebrate “May the 4th Be With You” day, Paste lists “Five Books Every Star Wars Fan Should Read.” Shondaland has a reading list too. The 4th is over, but Solo will be around for the summer.

Neil Gaiman’s next book will be Art Matters with illustrations by Chris Riddel (no word yet on the US publisher or a pub date). Bookseller reports “Combining speeches, poems and creative manifestos, the book will explore how reading, imagining and creating can change the world.”

Jasper Fforde announces his newest book, Early Riser. He says it will pub in the US in 2019.

The Guardian interviews Lorrie Moore, See What Can Be Done: Essays, Criticism, and Commentary (Knopf; LJ starred review) and Margo Jefferson, Negroland (Pantheon). Jefferson also has piece in The Guardian about Meghan Markle.

The Atlantic has a report by James Fellows, Our Towns: A 100,000-Mile Journey into the Heart of America by James Fallows and Deborah Fallows (Pantheon: Random). The magazine also reviews The Girl Who Smiled Beads: A Story of War and What Comes After by Clemantine Wamariya, Elizabeth Weil (Crown: Random; LJ starred review), calling it “remarkable.”

The Washington Post has a story about the new wave of viral poets.

Discussion questions are up for the PBS/NYT book club title, Educated: A Memoir by Tara Westover (Random; LJ starred review).

Entertainment Weekly has a visual excerpt of Visualizing The Beatles: A Complete Graphic History of the World’s Favorite Band by John Pring, Rob Thomas (Dey Street: Harper) and a short Q&A with Brad Meltzer with a cover reveal of his forthcoming The First Conspiracy (Flatiron: Macmillan).

Random House is publishing children’s book based on video games, including Super Mario.

Vogue has a short piece on Rene Ricard’s first book of poems, now back in print.

Brooklyn is getting a center for fiction. It will open in 2019.

Authors on Air

CBS Sunday Morning features Our Towns: A 100,000-Mile Journey into the Heart of America by James Fallows and Deborah Fallows (Pantheon: Random), sending it soaring on Amazon.

CNN’s Fareed Zakaria helps boost Fair Shot: Rethinking Inequality and How We Earn by Chris Hughes (St. Martin’s: Macmillan).

Ronan Farrow, War on Peace: The End of Diplomacy and the Decline of American Influence (W.W. Norton), will be on The Daily Show with Trevor Noah tonight.

NPR’s All Things Considered interviews Michael W. Twitty, the James Beard award winner for The Cooking Gene: A Journey Through African American Culinary History in the Old South (Amistad: Harper; LJ starred review) and Allison PatakiBeauty in the Broken Places: A Memoir of Love, Faith and Resilience (Random).

NPR’s Weekend Edition Saturday interviews Rumaan AlamThat Kind of Mother (Ecco). The show also has pieces on Zora Neale Hurston’s Barracoon: The Story of the Last “Black Cargo (Amistad: Harper) and Howard Bryant’s The Heritage: Black Athletes, a Divided America, and the Politics of Patriotism (Beacon Press: Random).

NPR’s The Salt interviews Mark Kurlansky, Milk!: A 10,000-Year Food Fracas (Bloomsbury: Macmillan).

Variety reviews PBS’ Little Women, “How it is possible to make Louisa May Alcott’s beloved classic so dull that you start to envy the characters who die of scarlet fever?”

Lawrence Osborne’s novel The Forgiven (Hogarth: Random) is headed to the movies. So is Sweet Lamb of Heaven by Lydia Millet (W.W. Norton).

Trailers are out for A Simple Favor, based on the novel by Darcey Bell (film rights sold in advance of print publication) and for Yellow Birds, based on the critically acclaimed novel by Kevin Powers.

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