Run Your Week: Big Books, Sure Bets, & Titles Making News, April 15, 2019 | Book Pulse

Redemption by David Baldacci leads holds this week but Sally Rooney wins the buzz contest hands down. Game of Thrones wins too, and there is a teaser out for episode 2. Also new to the screen, a teaser trailer for The Rise of Skywalker. The Pulitzer Prize for Fiction will be announced later today.

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Big Books of the Week

Redemption by David Baldacci (Grand Central: Hachette) leads holds this week.

Other titles in demand include:

Normal People by Sally Rooney (Hogarth: Random House; LJ starred review)

The 13-Minute Murder by James Patterson with Shan Serafin (Grand Central: Hachette)

The Department of Sensitive Crimes: A Detective Varg Novel by Alexander McCall Smith (Pantheon: Random House)

The Better Sister by Alafair Burke (Harper)

The Mister by E L James (Vintage: Random House)

Miracle Creek by Angie Kim (Sarah Crichton Books: Macmillan; LJ starred review)

Librarians and Booksellers Suggest

There are three new LibraryReads picks hitting shelves this week; all are also Indie Next selections:

Miracle Creek by Angie Kim (Sarah Crichton: Macmillan; LJ starred review)

“When a medical treatment facility explodes, killing two people, the ensuing murder trial rocks the town while witnesses go to extremes to conceal their darkest secrets. Part family drama, part whodunit, Miracle Creek is a gripping debut. For fans of Celeste Ng and Liane Moriarty.”— Portia Kapraun, Delphi Public Library, Delphi, IN

Miracle Creek is a courtroom drama with impeccable pacing, an original plot, and stellar writing. It’s also a remarkably empathetic book, exploring the ripple effects of causality and the urgent need to do right by each other in big and small ways, recognizing that even the best of us will fail once in a while. It is a lovely reminder that even when doing the right thing feels like swimming upstream, we never know what harm may be prevented and what good might come from our actions. A great read that deserves broad success.” —Sara Hinckley, Hudson Booksellers, Marietta, GA

Normal People by Sally Rooney (Hogarth: Random House; LJ starred review)

“Follows the complicated relationship between Connell, a popular boy, and Marianne, a lonely and private girl, through their high school years and college. A great book club pick. For fans of Three Junes by Julia Glass and Idaho by Emily Ruskovich.”— Anbolyn Potter, Chandler Public Library, Chandler, AZ

“What a treat to discover Sally Rooney! This novel stands out shining from the current onslaught of mediocre prose and less-than-suspenseful thriller plots. Normal People is the story of a relationship between two high school classmates in a small town in Ireland, and how it changes over time, through their last year of college in Dublin. Rooney’s spare and brilliant writing illuminates her insight and makes the unfolding of these two personalities completely compelling.” —Georgiana Dix Blomberg, Magnolia’s Bookstore, Seattle, WA

Southern Lady Code: Essays by Helen Ellis (Doubleday: Random House; LJ starred review)

“A funny, spot-on collection of essays on topics ranging from marriage and manners, three-ways, and how to be a good friend in the middle of a murder trial. For fans of You Play the Girl by Carina Chocano andThick by Tressie McMillan Cottom.”— Linda Quinn, Fairfield Public Library, Fairfield, CT

“I had forgotten how to laugh, but after opening this book and starting to read, I couldn’t help myself—it just came bubbling up. What a wonderful thing it is to hold in your hands something that has the power to make one erupt with hoots and howls. Helen Ellis is a treasure and a gift from the gods; she tells it like it is in Southern lady speak and we love her all the more for the joy she has given us.” —Beth Reynolds, Norwich Bookstore, Norwich, VT

There is one additional Indie Next selection as well:

The Binding by Bridget Collins (William Morrow: Harper; LJ starred review)

“An absolutely gorgeous novel! Collins writes Emmett in such a way that readers will experience his confusion and frustration and then have it unknotted simultaneously as his tale unfolds. The three parts of the novel are brilliantly ordered to deliver a powerful tale that will tear your heart to pieces slowly and, in one spectacular scene, mend it completely with hope and love. Do Binders provide healing and comfort, or are they wicked magicians determined to leave you empty? What are you willing to risk for someone you love?” —Angela Shores, Adventure Bound Books, Morganton, NC

These books and others publishing the week of April 15, 2019, are listed in a downloadable spreadsheet.

In the Media

Trust Exercise by Susan Choi (Henry Holt: Macmillan) leads Entertainment Weekly's book coverage, with an A- grade. Normal People by Sally Rooney (Hogarth: Random House; LJ starred review) gets an A- review too. Maybe You Should Talk to Someone: A Therapist, HER Therapist, and Our Lives Revealed by Lori Gottlieb (HMH) gets coverage, as does The Mister by E L James (Vintage: Penguin). Best. Movie. Year. Ever.: How 1999 Blew Up the Big Screen by Brian Raftery (S. & S.) is highlighted too. EW has a feature on Sally Rooney and one on Marvel's Avengers: End Game. Also, an update on all things Middle-Earth and a look at the fashions in Killing Eve and the villains in Hellboy. Game of Thrones tops "The Must List," followed by Les Misérables. Fame Adjacent by Sarah Skilton (Grand Central: Hachette) is No. 5 while The Mother-in-Law by Sally Hepworth (St. Martin's: Macmillan) is No. 9. The New & Notable books are here.

People 's "Book of the Week" is Normal People by Sally Rooney (Hogarth: Random House; LJ starred review). Trust Exercise by Susan Choi (Henry Holt: Macmillan) and Lost Roses by Martha Hall Kelly (Random House) as also highlighted. In a features on what stars are reading, Susan Lucci is into I've Been Thinking . . .: Reflections, Prayers, and Meditations for a Meaningful Life by Maria Shriver (Pamela Dorman: Penguin), Scott Foley tackling The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand (NAL: Random House), and Vanessa Hudgens is reading The Power Path: The Shaman's Way to Success in Business and Life by Stevens Ph.D. Jose and Lena Stevens (New World Library). There is a feature on the film Breakthrough, based on The Impossible: The Miraculous Story of a Mother's Faith and Her Child's Resurrection by Joyce Smith, with Ginger Kolbaba (FaithWords: Hachette). Also, a feature on Game of Thrones. People leads its "Picks" list with Les Misérables. Shazam! also makes the list as does Wild Nights with Emily. To close, there is a recipe from Mostly Plants: 101 Delicious Flexitarian Recipes from the Pollan Family by Tracy Pollan, Dana Pollan, Lori Pollan, Corky Pollan, with a forward by Michael Pollan (Harper Wave).

Reviews

The NYT reviews Magical Negro by Morgan Parker (Tin House: W.W. Norton): "a work that explores the gap between black experience and the white imagination’s version of it." Also, Jared Diamond uses the platform of his review of Falter: Has the Human Game Begun to Play Itself Out? by Bill McKibben (Henry Holt: Macmillan) to write a bit about the book and more about his own stance on the issue. Normal People by Sally Rooney (Hogarth: Random House; LJ starred review): "It’s wonderful to hear the sound of Rooney’s voice on the page again, and the pleasures of her storytelling are even more immediate than in the first novel. But the book can also seem rushed and conventional in ways her debut did not."

NPR reviews Optic Nerve by Maria Gainza, translated by Thomas Bunstead (Catapult): "It's a book about an art critic, and it's full of extremely good art criticism." Also, Radical Suburbs: Experimental Living on the Fringes of the American City by Amanda Kolson Hurley (Belt Publishing): "Writing with brisk, upbeat directness, Kolson Hurley urges the reader to envision a very different kind of suburb." The 100 Most Jewish Foods: A Highly Debatable List by Alana Newhouse (Artisan: Workman): "This book grew out of an online project, and often it shows. Like a lot of quick turnaround writing of the Internet age, many pieces in this book are lightly sourced, and some more about clever constructions ... than deeper-level history and fact."

Briefly Noted

Electric Lit predicts the 2019 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, announced latter today.

The Los Angeles Times Book Prizes are out.

The Wolfson History Prize shortlist is announced.

The LA Times is launching a community book club.

USA Today picks books for the week.

NPR's April Romance column looks at "Love At Any Age, In Any Era."

Electric Lit selects "The 20 Best Debuts of the First Half of 2019."

Time explores why Game of Thrones on TV is better than in print.

Vulture asks Tad Williams to consider GOT's legacy in Epic Fantasy.

Entertainment Weekly has new details about the Saga comic.

The NYT features Stassi Schroeder, Next Level Basic: The Definitive Basic Bitch Handbook (Gallery: S. & S.).

The Guardian interviews Ian McEwan, also David Chariandy, I've Been Meaning to Tell You: A Letter To My Daughter (Bloomsbury: Macmillan), and Tash Aw, We, the Survivors (FSG: Macmillan).

The LA Times interviews Bret Easton Ellis.

Vanity Fair spotlights Ruth Reichl, Save Me the Plums: My Gourmet Memoir (Random House; LJ starred review).

Tom Doherty Associates is starting a new horror imprint.

The NYT celebrates Persephone Books in London.

Authors on Air

NPR interviews Cathy Guisewite, Fifty Things That Aren't My Fault: Essays from the Grown-up Years (G.P. Putnam's Sons: Penguin). Also Sarah Blake, Naamah (Riverhead: Penguin), Jeff Kinney, Diary of an Awesome Friendly Kid: Rowley Jefferson's Journal (Amulet: Abrams), Siddharth Dube, An Indefinite Sentence: A Personal History of Outlawed Love and Sex (Atria: S. & S.), and Megan K. Stack, Women's Work: A Reckoning with Work and Home (Doubleday: Random House).

PBS News Hour interviews Susan Page, The Matriarch: Barbara Bush and the Making of an American Dynasty (Twelve: Hachette).

Tor.com runs down The Mandalorian, the next Star Wars series.

Perry Mason is headed back to TV. The Confessions of Frannie Langton by Cara Collins is headed to TV too. Deadline Hollywood has details.

Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker gets a teaser trailer. As does episode 2 of Game of Thrones and Big Little Lies, season 2.

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