Run Your Week: Big Books, Sure Bets, & Titles Making News, Mar. 11, 2019 | Book Pulse

Wolf Pack by C. J. Box leads holds this week, and, along with James Patterson's The First Lady, dominates demand. Audiobooks get attention as do two literary tourist locales and the apartment of an designer turned author.

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Big Books of the Week

Wolf Pack by C. J. Box (G.P. Putnam's Sons: Penguin) leads holds this week. Close on its heels is The First Lady by James Patterson, with Brendan DuBois (Grand Central: Hachette). Together they dominate the holds for the week.

Librarians and Booksellers Suggest

There are two LibraryReads choices coming out this week:

A Dangerous Collaboration by Deanna Raybourn (Berkley: Penguin)

“In this fine addition to the series, Veronica Speedwell joins Stoker and his brother on an island off the British coast, attempting to solve a years-old mystery about the disappearance of a young woman on her wedding day. Recommended for fans of historical Victorian fiction, murder mysteries, and lepidoptery.”— Jill McKinney, Gunnison County Library, Gunnison, CO

The Bird King by G. Willow Wilson (Grove Press)

“Lush and wonderful language, characters, and worldbuilding make this an enjoyable read for fans of historical fantasy. The relationship between concubine Fatima and mapmaker Hassan is multifaceted and compelling. A good choice for readers who liked Uprooted and City of Brass .”—Nora Walsh, Princeton Public Library, Princeton, NJ

It is also an Indie Next pick for March:

“Fatima is a concubine of the sultan of the last emirate in the Iberian Peninsula to submit to the Spanish Inquisition. When her dearest friend, Hassan, a mapmaker who can map places he has never seen (and that do not always exist), is singled out by the Inquisition, she flees with him and a jinn, following the trail of the elusive and mythical Bird King, who may or may not be able to grant them sanctuary. Wilson’s latest novel is rich with the historical detail, lush description, and fantastical elements that we have come to know and love from her. A story of resistance, freedom, seeking, and strength, and a true fable for our times.” —Anna Eklund, University Book Store, Seattle, WA

Two more Indie Next picks publish this week as well:

If, Then by Kate Hope Day (Random House)

“I devoured this book. Reading about these characters felt like stepping right into other lives, with all of the messiness of human striving and relationships. If, Then is a beautiful novel for this alone, but when each character begins to see visions they don’t understand, the book takes on a new sense of urgency. Driven by its characters and with a masterfully written thread of speculative fiction, If, Then is a moving look at how events large and small and the choices we make carve our unique lives out of the infinite number of possible lives that could have been.” —Kelsey O’Rourke, Literati Bookstore, Ann Arbor, MI

The Trial of Lizzie Borden by Cara Robertson (S. & S.)

“Cara Robertson’s first book details the events surrounding the infamous murders of Andrew and Abby Borden in Fall River, Massachusetts, in 1892. Based entirely on primary sources — trial transcripts, contemporary accounts, and even recently discovered letters from Lizzie herself — The Trial of Lizzie Borden is an in-depth look at the circumstances surrounding the incident and her subsequent trial. Robertson has poured decades of research into this sensational book, breathing new life into a story that has captivated the American psyche for over a century. An excellent read for fans of David Grann’s Killers of the Flower Moon and Michelle McNamara’s I’ll Be Gone in the Dark.” —Rachel Haisley, The King’s English Bookshop, Salt Lake City, UT

These books and others publishing the week of March 11, 2019, are listed in a downloadable spreadsheet.

In The Media

Entertainment Weekly devotes most this week's double issue to Game of Thrones, with a series episode guide, maps, costumes, weapons, a family tree, speculations, and much more. On "The Must List" are Don't Stop Believin' by Olivia Newton-John (Gallery: S. & S.), Shrill, The Bird King by G. Willow Wilson (Grove Press), and Captain Marvel.

People's "Book of the Week" is That Good Night: Life and Medicine in the Eleventh Hour by Sunita Puri (Viking: Penguin). In "Best New Books" are Auntie Poldi and the Vineyards of Etna by Mario Giordano, translated by John Brownjohn (HMH) and When All Is Said by Anne Griffin (Thomas Dunne: Macmillan). "New in Paperback" are Women in Sunlight by Frances Mayes (Crown: Random House), The House of Broken Angels by Luis Alberto Urrea (Back Bay: Hachette), and You Think It, I'll Say It: Stories by Curtis Sittenfeld (Random House). The "Kid Pick" is You Are My Happy by Hoda Kotb, illustrated by Suzie Mason (Harper). On the "Picks" list is Captain Marvel. Brie Larson also gets a feature later in the issue. Olivia Newton-John, Don't Stop Believin' (Gallery: S. & S.), does as well. Getting a spotlight too is Carol Spencer Dressing Barbie: A Celebration of the Clothes That Made America’s Favorite Doll and the Incredible Woman Behind Them (Harper).


The NYT reviews Trump Sky Alpha by Mark Doten (Graywolf: Macmillan): "a funny book and a sad one, a bright one and a dark one, a distant sci-fi dystopia and a ripped-from-the-headlines tragedy." Also, House of Stone by by Novuyo Rosa Tshuma (W.W. Norton; LJ starred review): "remarkable." The Twice-Born: Life and Death on the Ganges by Aatish Taseer (FSG: Macmillan), writing it is, among other things, "a detailed, learned and highly readable tour of Hindu history." Instructions for a Funeral: Stories by David Means (FSG: Macmillan): "plotless and, worse, formless. But there was one story, “What They Did,” that I could not stop thinking about." Truth in Our Times: Inside the Fight for Press Freedom in the Age of Alternative Facts by David E. McCraw (All Points: Macmillan): "It is spirited and hopeful and even, at times, lighthearted. It is, in a way, a love letter to the First Amendment."

NPR reviews Gingerbread by Helen Oyeyemi (Riverhead: Penguin): "both stunningly beautiful and breathtakingly original." Also, An American Summer: Love and Death in Chicago by Alex Kotlowitz (Nan A. Talese: Random House'; LJ starred review): "a painful chronicle about an extremely violent city based on the narratives of those who managed to survive its streets." The Altruists by Andrew Ridker (Viking: Penguin): "a lively, tragicomic debut novel, a probe into questions that never get old: What constitutes a good, moral life, and how do you pull it off in this world?" The Volunteer by Salvatore Scibona (Penguin): "Heavy as it is, there's a buoyancy to its voices that makes it compulsively readable."

USA Today reviews The Wolf and the Watchman by Niklas Natt och Dag (Atria: S. & S.), giving it 3 stars and calling it "a brutal book of Scandinavian noir you won't soon forget."

The Washington Post reviews Say Nothing: A True Story of Murder and Memory in Northern Ireland by Patrick Radden Keefe (Doubleday: Random House; LJ starred review): "speaks volumes — about the zealotry of youth, the long-term consequences of violence and the politics of forgetting." Also, How to Hide an Empire: A History of the Greater United States by Daniel Immerwahr (FSG: Macmillan): "meandering but never boring." Darwin Devolves: The New Science About DNA That Challenges Evolution by Michael J. Behe (HarperOne), under the headline "Intelligent design gets even dumber."

Briefly Noted

The Washington Post picks audiobooks "to get you to winter's end." Paste suggests audiobooks not to miss in 2019.

The Publishing Triangle Award nomineess have been announced.

The Stella Prize shortlist is out.

The NYT has an essay on the "perils of cancel culture."

The Washington Post features I.M.: A Memoir by Isaac Mizrahi (Flatiron: Macmillan). The NYT offers a tour of his apartment.

Vulture features John Lanchester, The Wall (W.W. Norton).

Vanity Fair interviews Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie.

The Guardian interviews Elizabeth McCracken.

The NYT travels to the home of Ivan Turgenev, newly restored in Russia. Also, the paper takes "a tour of old-school San Francisco, with an emphasis on the Beats’ legacy."

The Atlantic considers novels featuring characters that have the same name, as well as Dreyer's English: An Utterly Correct Guide to Clarity and Style by Benjamin Dreyer, (Random House). The magazine also writes about sports books.

Entertainment Weekly reports that Elton John plans a memoir. It will publish in October from Henry Holt but the title has yet to be set.

Axios has a round-up of forthcoming political books by journalists.

The NYT reports that the fight over To Kill a Mockingbird on stage continues.

The NYT has three literary obituaries, for Gillian Freeman, David Rogers, and George Stade.

Authors on Air

On NPR, Scott Simon writes about the reach of The Godfather.

NPR interviews Aida Salazar, The Moon Within (Arthur A. Levine Books: Scholastic; SLJ starred review).

Olivia Newton-John, Don't Stop Believin' (Gallery: S. & S.), will be on The Talk today.

Deadline Hollywood reports that the Port of Earth comic is headed to Amazon. Also, Tallulah the Tooth Fairy CEO by Dr. Tamara Pizzoli might be headed to TV.

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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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