‘I Have Some Questions for You’ by Rebecca Makkai Tops Library Holds Lists | Book Pulse

I Have Some Questions for You by Rebecca Makkai leads library holds this week. New editions of Roald Dahl’s children’s books stir controversy. Four LibraryReads and five Indie Next picks publish this week. The Authors’ Club announces the longlist for the Best First Novel Award 2023, and the 2021 Endeavour Award finalists are announced. Martina Fačková receives the 2022 Jack Gaughan Award for Best Emerging Artist. Gillian Flynn launches her new imprint with Scorched Grace by Margot Douaihy. Plus, All Quiet on the Western Front, based on the book by Erich Maria Remarque, won 7 BAFTA awards, including best picture.

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Big Books of the Week

I Have Some Questions for You by Rebecca Makkai (Viking; LJ starred review), leads holds this week.

Other titles in demand include:

Burner by Mark Greaney (Berkley)

The Last Kingdom by Steve Berry (Grand Central)

The Writing Retreat by Julia Bartz (Atria: Emily Bestler Books)

It's One of Us by J.T. Ellison (MIRA; LJ starred review)

These books and others publishing the week of Feb. 20, 2023 are listed in a downloadable spreadsheet.

Librarians and Booksellers Suggest

Four LibraryReads and five Indie Next picks publish this week:

It's One of Us by J.T. Ellison (MIRA; LJ starred review)

"JT Ellison has written a beautiful story from start to finish. Olivia and Park struggle with infertility. A woman is found dead, and DNA shows the murderer is related to Park. Not only is this a well-done mystery of whodunit, it is also a drama of what happens as a couple deals with loss. Another great book from an incredible author. For fans of All the Dangerous Things."—Andrea Galvin, Mt. Pulaski Public Library, Mount Pulaski, IL

I Have Some Questions for You by Rebecca Makkai (Viking; LJ starred review)

"Engaging story of a boarding school murder being solved 20 years later by true-crime podcast enthusiasts. Or is it a story of memories and how you interact with them, depending on your stage in life and your biases, or one about how as a teen you simultaneously know everything and nothing? Or is it all three? For fans of Jean Hanff Korelitz."—Lorri Steinbacher, Ridgewood Public Library, Ridgewood, NJ

It is also the #1 Indie Next pick:

“Rebecca Makkai redefines the campus novel for our current times. This was deftly written with such a fresh perspective and clever deconstruction of a murder case, I walked around my apartment fully immersed, book in hand.”—Kira Wizner, Merritt Bookstore, Millbrook, NY

For Her Consideration by Amy Spalding (Kensington)

"Aspiring screenwriter Nina writes e-mails for other people, including Hollywood darling Ari Fox. Nina is enamored of Ari but a bad breakup made her vow never to date again. This rom-com with a queer actress and plus size woman offers great representation of realistic body positivity. Readers will root for the characters in this funny, smart, and heartwarming book!"—Andrea Tucci, Glencoe Public Library, Glencoe IL

The Writing Retreat by Julia Bartz (Atria: Emily Bestler)

(Atria) "Alex and her ex-best friend, Wren, along with 3 other women are picked for a writing retreat with infamous author Roza Vallo. They must finish writing their books in a month's time, and the best one will be published. Roza is a mercurial taskmaster, becoming stranger while the awe the women have for her turns to fear. This is an unusual horror story with many twists and turns."—Judy Gaynes Sebastian, Eastham Public Library, Eastham, MA

It is also an Indie Next pick:

“This story takes ‘never meet your heroes’ to a whole new level. I loved the use of tension in the book, and how the author played with supernatural elements while still keeping the story grounded in reality. Twisty, dark, and even fun!”—Ann Branson, Beach Books, Seaside, OR

Three additional Indie Next picks publish this week:

Scorched Grace by Margot Douaihy (Gillian Flynn Books)

“After 33 years of bookselling, I can say I have not read a novel as original and shocking as Scorched Grace. She’s a (punk) nun like none other (bad pun, but true) resolved to solve a murder to protect her new community and her own choices.”—Barbara Peters, The Poisoned Pen Bookstore, Scottsdale, AZ

Users, by Colin Winnette (Soft Skull)

“Wonder what the metaverse will be like? This novel gives a glimpse into one possible future, where users of virtual reality turn memories into ‘experiences’ anyone else can share. This story has stayed on my mind since I finished it.”—Victoria Ford, Comma, a Bookshop, Minneapolis, MN

Murder Your Employer: The McMasters Guide to Homicide by Rupert Holmes (Avid Reader; LJ starred review)

“Dastardly, devious, and utterly delightful! Welcome to The McMaster’s Conservatory for The Applied Arts, a unique school that teaches you to get away with murder. Prepare to be thoroughly entertained! A unique, original and fun read.”—Maxwell Gregory, Madison Street Books, Chicago, IL

In the Media

People’s "Book of the Week" is I Have Some Questions for You by Rebecca Makkai (Viking; LJ starred review). Also getting attention are Maame by Jessica George (St. Martin’s) and My What If Year: A Memoir by Alisha Fernandez Miranda (Zibby Books). The " New in Nonfiction" section covers Hanging Out: The Radical Power of Killing Time by Sheila Liming (Melville House), Dyscalculia: A Love Story of Epic Miscalculation by Camonghne Felix (One World), and Pat in the City: My Life of Fashion, Style, and Breaking All the Rules by Patricia Field (Dey Street). The movie Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania gets buzzy coverage too and has associated titles for readers to enjoy. 



NYT reviews We Should Not Be Friends: The Story of a Friendship by Will Schwalbe (Knopf): “is a mild but often moving book, watered with a few perhaps inevitable bromides about ‘sharin’” and personal ‘journeys’ — but also salted with Schwalbe’s well-established literary intelligence and a palpable empathy.”  And, Trust the Plan: The Rise of QAnon and the Conspiracy That Unhinged America by Will Sommer (Harper): “His book makes you homesick for the oldest and simplest of American virtues: knowledge, skepticism and sanity.”  Also, Homestead by Melinda Moustakis (Flatiron): “How small a life is, how uninspiring, when we examine it alongside earth and sky. But in a gulp of cherry wine, a bonfire and a birth, Moustakis finds magnificence in the smallness.” And, Sink: A Memoir by Joseph Earl Thomas (Grand Central): “despite the ruse of palpable resolution, the business of discerning your identity is dynamic and never-ending. It’s a truth that can undermine the tidy forms of best intentions, but one that — thankfully, generously — remains effervescent throughout the entirety of Sink: A Memoir, by Joseph Earl Thomas.”  And, True Life: Poems by Adam Zagajewski, trans. by Clare Cavanagh (Farrar; LJ starred review): “One way to define his importance is related to the title True Life — characteristically large, with an equally characteristic, gentle smile at its own unlikely and much-thwarted ambition and its limits.”  Also, The Curse of the Marquis de Sade: A Notorious Scoundrel, a Mythical Manuscript, and the Biggest Scandal in Literary History by Joel Warner (Crown): “A journalist and editor, Warner doesn’t let infamy flatten Sade’s dimensions.”  Plus, I Have Some Questions for You by Rebecca Makkai (Viking; LJ starred review): I Have Some Questions for You lacks the richer hues of this author’s earlier books, but it’s whip-smart, uncompromising and (mostly) a pleasure to read.”The New Yorker also reviews: “For her, suspending judgment is a creative act, inviting the novel’s last and most important thrall, in which imagination fills the gaps left by knowledge. By the final page, all options remain alive. ‘You’ hold the knife. It’s the perfect crime.”

The Washington Post reviews Oscar Wars: A History of Hollywood in Gold, Sweat, and Tears, by Michael Schulman (HarperCollins; LJ starred review): “More than a mere journey through Academy Awards history, his book is a trip through Hollywood’s power struggles.”

NPR reviews  “5 new mysteries and thrillers to help get you through winter.”

Briefly Noted

New editions of several books by Roald Dahl, including Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, have been altered by the publisher to be more inclusive, stirring controversy.  NYT has the story. There is also coverage at NPR, Entertainment Weekly, The Guardian, USA Today, Time, FoxNews, and Deadline

The 2021 Endeavour Award finalists are announced.

The Authors’ Club Best First Novel Award 2023 longlist is announced.

Martina Fačková receives the 2022 Jack Gaughan Award for Best Emerging Artist. Locus reports. 

LA Times talks with Rupert Holmes about his new book, Murder Your Employer: The McMasters Guide to Homicide (Avid Reader; LJ starred review). Also, Gillian Flynn discusses why she "launched her book imprint with a debut noir about a rebel nun." 

USA Today shares 5 books for the week.

CrimeReads suggests 10 books for the week.

LitHub highlights 12 new books this week.

Vulture has 6 books to read in February

“Leiji Matsumoto, creator of classic space opera manga and anime, dies at 85.” LA Times has an obituary. 

“Roger C. Schank, Theorist of Artificial Intelligence, Dies at 76.” NYT has an obituary. 

Authors On Air

NPR’s Morning Edition talks with Lisa Damour, Ph.D. about her new book, The Emotional Lives of Teenagers: Raising Connected, Capable, and Compassionate Adolescents (Ballantine; LJ starred review). Also, Senator Bernie Sanders discusses anger and his new book, It's OK to Be Angry About Capitalism, written with John Nichols (Crown). Sanders visits The View today. 

NPR’s Fresh Air revisits interviews with LBJ biographer Robert Caro

CBS Sunday Morning explores the latest film adaptation of All Quiet on the Western Front, based on the book by Erich Maria Remarque. The film won 7 awards, including best picture, at the 2023 BAFTAs. PBS Canvas has coverage.

Justin Baldoni, Boys Will Be Human: A Get-Real Gut-Check Guide to Becoming the Strongest, Kindest, Bravest Person You Can Be (HarperCollins) checks in with Tamron Hall.

Bozoma Saint John, The Urgent Life: My Story of Love, Loss, and Survival (Viking), will appear on The Kelly Clarkson Show.

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