Lee Child & Andrew Child Lead Library Holds; Richard Owain Roberts Wins Not the Booker Prize | Book Pulse

The Sentinel by Lee Child and Andrew Child leads holds this week. People’s "Book of the Week" is The Cold Millions by Jess Walter. Publishers Weekly reveals its "Best Books 2020" choices. Hello Friend We Missed You by Richard Owain Roberts wins The Guardian's 2020 Not the Booker Prize. The Air Year by Caroline Bird is among the winners of the Forward Prizes for Poetry 2020. Please welcome Book Pulse's new writer, Mary Bakija!

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Welcome to Mary Bakija

We are pleased to welcome Mary Bakija as the new author of Book Pulse. Mary is a writer and editor based in New York City who recently completed her MSLIS at Pratt Institute's School of Information, where she was president of the student chapter of the ALA. She is a recipient of the 2020 New York Library Association Dewey Scholarship Award, and was a 2019-2020 Web Archiving Fellow at The Frick Art Reference Library.

Big Books of the Week

The Sentinel: A Jack Reacher Novel by Lee Child and Andrew Child (Delacorte Press: Random House) leads holds this week.

Other titles in high demand include:

Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Deep End by Jeff Kinney (Amulet Books: Abrams)

Love Your Life by Sophie Kinsella (The Dial Press: Random House)

Three Women Disappear by James Patterson and Shan Serafin (Little, Brown: Hachette)

Shakeup by Stuart Woods (G.P. Putnam's Sons: Penguin)

These books and others publishing the week of Oct. 26, 2020, are listed in a downloadable spreadsheet.  

Librarians and Booksellers Suggest

There are three LibraryReads selections publishing this week:

The Wonder Boy of Whistle Stop by Fannie Flagg (Random House)

"Revisits the small town of Whistle Stop, Alabama. Dot, the postmistress, sends out a yearly Christmas letter and brings the former residents up to speed with one another. Each chapter focuses on a different year, from the thirties through the present day, tied together with Dot’s annual letter. For readers who enjoyed Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe." —Sharon Hutchinson, Keytesville Library, Keytesville, MO

Crazy Stupid Bromance by Lyssa Kay Adams (Berkley: Penguin)

“Another enjoyable addition to the Bromance Book Club series. One of the elements I like about this series is how the author uses the book club as a tool to analyze various themes within the romance genre. This one was particularly good because it dealt with abandonment and forgiveness.” —Erica Naranjo, Sacramento Public Library, Sacramento, CA

It is also an Indie Next title:

“Alexis’ life has been a bit crazy lately. In addition to uncovering a family secret, she owns a cat café, which has become a meeting ground for women who have experienced sexual harassment, and is in love with her best friend, Noah. Noah is also in love with Alexis and reluctantly receives help from the Bromance Book Club. Adams delivers a funny, romantic novel that touches on major issues, including the aftermath of speaking out about sexual harassment, forgiveness, compassion, and trust.” —Anastasia Wiley, Rakestraw Books, Danville, CA

Love Your Life by Sophie Kinsella (The Dial Press: Random House)

“Ava and Matt’s whirlwind romance at a writers’ retreat turns upside down when they return to London and really get to know one another. Kinsella delivers another charming rom-com full of quirky characters and lighthearted humor.” —Annabelle Mortensen, Skokie Public Library, Skokie, IL

There are four additional titles on the Indie Next list coming out this week, including the No. 1 pick for the month, Memorial by Bryan Washington (Riverhead: Penguin)

“Reading Memorial is like sitting down with a dear friend, asking ‘What’s going on with you?’ and settling in for much-needed catch-up on life, love, heartache, and family. Washington’s writing is so intimate and direct that you feel the exhilaration, frustration, and uncertainty that Benson and Mike feel about their relationships, both with one another and with their families, which inspires a heart-felt connection to these characters that is hard to find in the world during socially distant times.” —Colleen Ellis, Lark and Owl Booksellers, Georgetown, TX

The Cold Millions by Jess Walter (Harper)

“The gorgeous writing, vivid setting, compelling characters, and engrossing story aren’t even the best parts of this novel. Instead, I just keep marveling at how Jess Walter takes events from history to illuminate our present while keeping them rooted in their own time, from the labor movement to class, race, and gender equality and civil rights issues, to protests and freedom of speech. The northwest in 1909 has never been so relevant. Beautiful Ruins was a hard act to follow but, amazingly, Walter manages it with aplomb.” —Ariana Paliobagis, Country Bookshelf, Bozeman, MT

Group: How One Therapist and a Circle of Strangers Saved My Life by Christie Tate (Avid Reader Press: S. & S)

“I cannot recommend this book enough! Group reads like a novel while also being incredibly insightful. Christie Tate is able to articulate a reality that I, and I’m sure others, haven’t quite been able to express to those closest to us. This book will help people realize that there are things they haven’t let themselves face yet, but it will also show them that their feelings are normal and natural. I, for one, am going to recommend this from now on to anyone I think might benefit from Tate’s journey, which I think will be just about anyone.” —Sterling Miller, Ferguson Books & More, Grand Forks, ND

Fortune Favors the Dead by Stephen Spotswood (Doubleday: Random House)

“Not since Nero Wolfe and Archie Goodwin have I so enjoyed the page-turning yarn of a New York private detective and a wisecracking sidekick! Stephen Spotswood simultaneously nails the tone of classic detective stories and stands them on their head — because the brilliant gumshoe is Lillian Pentecost, a middle-aged woman with a disability, and her sidekick Willowjean ‘Will’ Parker, a gender-bending young circus performer with a sweet spot for the ladies. A delight from start to finish. Dare I hope this is the beginning of a series?” —Jaye Lawrence, Content Bookstore, Northfield, MN

In the Media

People’s "Book of the Week" is The Cold Millions by Jess Walter (Harper). Other books getting attention include The Once and Future Witches by Alix E. Harrow (Redhook: Hachette; LJ starred review) and The Dead Are Arising: The Life of Malcolm X by Les Payne, Tamara Payne (Liveright: W. W. Norton; LJ starred review). The "New in Nonfiction" section features Prince Philip Revealed: A Biography by Ingrid Seward (Atria: S. & S.), The Cobbler: How I Disrupted an Industry, Fell From Grace, and Came Back Stronger Than Ever by Steve Madden (Radius Book Group), and Red Comet: The Short Life and Blazing Art of Sylvia Plath by Heather Clark (Knopf). People “Picks” include The Undoing, The Witches, and The Queen's Gambit.


NPR reviews Snapped by Alexa Martin (Berkley: Penguin): "Martin delivers another heart-warming romance with loads of laughter and sensuality — but she also doesn't fumble the ball when it comes to providing a hard-hitting plot." Also, To Hold Up The Sky by Cixin Liu (Tor Books: Macmillan): "It is magic."

The NYT reviews The Sentinel by Lee Child and Andrew Child (Delacorte Press: Random House): "It’s also action-packed to a fault, which robs it of the leanness that is one of the series’ main attractions." Also, Looking to Get Lost: Adventures in Music and Writing by Peter Guralnick (Little, Brown: Hachette ; LJ starred review): "Reading it is like watching Merle Haggard perform in an uptight club with a quiet policy and a two-drink minimum. Actually, that doesn’t sound so terrible." Lastly, the Crime column is out and includes Only Truth by Julie Cameron (Scarlet: W. W. Norton), The Red Horse by James R. Benn (Soho Crime: Soho Press), Funeral for a Friend by Brian Freeman (Blackstone), and The Forger's Daughter by Bradford Morrow (Mysterious PressGrove/Atlantic).

The Washington Post reviews Goodnight Beautiful by Aimee Molloy (Harper): “Once — maybe twice — the technique is ingenious, in that it reveals to us readers how quickly we can jump to the wrong conclusions and stitch together faulty connections. Chapter after relentless chapter of “false suture” endings, however, reduce Molloy’s novel to an extended gimmick.”

USA Today reviews Where I Come From: Stories from the Deep South by Rick Bragg (Knopf: Random House), giving it 3.5 stars and writing: "The larger slices of southern life are the most welcome (the reader often is still hungry when the tidbits end)."

Briefly Noted

Publishers Weekly reveals its "Best Books 2020" choices and spotlights fall's notable writers.

USA Today picks five books for the week.

Crime Reads offers "10 New Books Coming Out This Week," plus six debuts to check out.

The Loan Stars list for November arrives.

Book Riot lists "10 Recent Books by Asian American Poets."

LJ provides "40 Resources for Raising Awareness of Lesser-Known Chronic Illnesses."

USA Today lists "10 books that offer a peek inside the White House."

The NYT selects "The Essential Agatha Christie."

Hello Friend We Missed You by Richard Owain Roberts (Parthian: Independent Publishers Group), out in the U.S. Mar. 1, 2021, wins The Guardian's 2020 Not the Booker Prize. Here is a video of the decision process.

Caroline Bird's The Air Year (Carcanet Press: Independent) is among the winners of the Forward Prizes for Poetry 2020.

The L. A. Times features Rachel Howzell Hall, Attica Locke and Ivy Pochoda and others “writing about cops in a moment of reckoning.” It is part of the paper’s Festival of Books.

The Guardian has a Q&A with Nicole Krauss, To Be a Man: Stories (Harper).

Eater talks to Vivian Howard about her cookbook, This Will Make It Taste Good (Voracious: Hachette; LJ starred review).

Entertainment Weekly has an excerpt from The Mystery of Mrs. Christie by Marie Benedict (Sourcebooks Landmark), out Dec. 29.

In forthcoming book news, The Hollywood Reporter speaks with the pseudonymous author of Mirka Andolfo’s Merciless (Image Comics), coming in 2021 with with art by Siya Oum. Also, The Story of Raekwon, written by Wu-Tang Clan's Raekwon with Anthony Bozza (Gallery Books: S. & S.), is coming in 2021. Rolling Stone reports.

TrekMovie.com reports Star Trek: Picard – The Dark Veil by James Swallow is coming Jan. 2021

Readers respond the The Washington Post article about book endings with picks of their own that drove them crazy.

The NYT remembers publisher and Booker Prize founder Tom Maschler, who died at age 87.

Authors on Air

NPR's Weekend Edition Saturday interviews Bryan Washington, Memorial (Riverhead: Penguin), who also shares his love of bánh mì with "The Grub Street Diet."

NPR’s Fresh Air interviews Rumaan Alam, Leave the World Behind (Ecco: Harper).

NPR's All Things Considered interviews Alicia Garza, The Purpose of Power: How We Come Together When We Fall Apart (One World: Random House; LJ starred review). Also, Ellis Cose discussed his book The Short Life And Curious Death of Free Speech in America (Amistad: HarperCollins).

CBS Sunday Morning sees what it takes to be in the Guinness World Records 2021.

Vulture notes there will probably be no new seasons of Netflix's Mindhunter, based on the book by John E. Douglas and Mark Olshaker.

Dash & Lily, based on Dash & Lily's Book of Dares by Rachel Cohn and David Levithan, gets a trailer. The series debuts on Netflix Nov. 10.

Netflix also has a trailer for the new animated series The Liberator, based on the Alex Kershaw book, which debuts Nov. 11.

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