‘The Briar Club’ by Kate Quinn Tops Holds Lists | Book Pulse

The Briar Club by Kate Quinn leads holds this week. Also getting buzz are titles by Emily Giffin, Daniel Silva, Taffy Brodesser-Akner, Linda Castillo, and Lana Ferguson. July Book Club picks include All the Colors of the Dark by Chris Whitaker (Read with Jenna), The Love of My Afterlife by Kirsty Greenwood (GMA), The God of the Woods by Liz Moore (B&N), and The Cliffs by J. Courtney Sullivan (Reese Witherspoon). People’s book of the week is The God of the Woods. The August Indie Next list is out, featuring #1 pick The Wedding People by Alison Espach. Audiofile announces the July Earphones Award winners, and The Millions publishes its summer 2024 preview. Plus, Alice Munro’s family secrets roil the literary world.

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Big Books of the Week

The Briar Club by Kate Quinn (Morrow; LJ starred review) leads holds this week. 

Other titles in demand include:

The Summer Pact by Emily Giffin (Ballantine)

A Death in Cornwall by Daniel Silva (Harper)

Long Island Compromise by Taffy Brodesser-Akner (Random; LJ starred review)

The Burning by Linda Castillo (Minotaur: St. Martin’s; LJ starred review)

The Game Changer by Lana Ferguson (Berkley)

These books and others publishing the week of July 8, 2024, are listed in a downloadable spreadsheet.

July Book Club Picks







All the Colors of the Dark by Chris Whitaker (Crown) is the Read with Jenna pick. 

The Love of My Afterlife by Kirsty Greenwood (Berkley) is the GMA book club pick

The God of the Woods by Liz Moore (Riverhead; LJ starred review) is the B&N pick

The Cliffs by J. Courtney Sullivan (Knopf) is Reese Witherspoon’s July pick

It’s Elementary by Elise Bryant (Berkley) is the Target book club pick.

Librarians and Booksellers Suggest

Six LibraryReads and seven Indie Next picks publish this week:

The top LibraryReads pick is The Spellshop by Sarah Beth Durst (Bramble)

“With her city and library under siege, Kiela and her sentient spider plant escape to the island of Caltrey with only the basic supplies and some magical books. Preferring her own company and books to people, she must learn to trust her new community as she rebuilds her family home and her life. This sweet cottagecore novel is pure delight.”—Jennifer Winberry, Hunterdon County Library, NJ

It is also an Indie Next pick:

“This cottagecore cozy fantasy absolutely ran away with my heart. It features a librarian more comfortable with books than people, a sentient spiderplant, stolen spellbooks, mythical creatures, found family, and jam.”—Carrie Deming, The Dog Eared Book, Palmyra, NY

Hall of Fame picks include The Briar Club by Kate Quinn (Morrow; LJ starred review) *Good for Book Clubs, and The Summer Pact by Emily Giffin (Ballantine)

Bury Your Gays by Chuck Tingle (Tor Nightfire; LJ starred review)

“TV writer Misha has just been given an ultimatum: straighten out his main characters, or let them be queer and kill them off immediately. He refuses, and the ghosts of his own horror-movie past come to haunt him. Now Misha has to survive and give his characters a happy ending. Highly recommended for any horror fan who's ever rooted for two queer-coded characters to ‘just kiss already’!”—Sarah Howison, Cincinnati & Hamilton County Public, OH

It is also an Indie Next pick:

“Unsettling, perfectly paced, and nothing short of brilliant, Bury Your Gays highlights the monsters that spawn when AI and corporate greed go hand in hand. You will flinch, you will feel, and you will understand Tingle’s mantra—‘Love Is Real.’”—Andrew King, Secret Garden Bookshop, Seattle, WA

The Next Best Fling by Gabriella Gamez (Forever)

“Marcela’s in love with her best friend Ben who's engaged to another woman (who Ben’s brother Theo adores). If this love square sounds messy, it is. When Marcela stops Theo from professing his love at Ben’s engagement party, they stumble upon a fake-dating predicament and decide to roll with it. This love story feels authentic, and the characters have palpable chemistry.”—Taylor Banze, St. Charles City-County Library, MO

The Game Changer by Lana Ferguson (Berkley)

“Hockey player Ian is seeking to rehab a sullied reputation, so he teams up with his friend's little sister Delilah, who's seeking to boost viewership of her cooking show. Ian's never considered her a romantic partner, but Delilah's had a crush on him since she was a teenager. When they reconnect as adults, their relationship quickly heats up.”—Rebecca Whalon, Lakeland Public Library, FL

Five additional Indie Next picks publish this week:

The Dallergut Dream Department Store by Miye Lee (Hanover Square: Harlequin; LJ starred review)

“Penny is a new hire learning to help the customers select the perfect dreams at the Dallergut Dream Department Store. Dallergut’s philosophy: only offer dreams that enhance a customer’s reality. This book is a healing, mysterious escape.”—Rachel Watkins, Avid Bookshop, Athens, GA

The Heart in Winter by Kevin Barry (Doubleday; LJ starred review)

“I found this story of two young lovers on the run in 1890s Montana to have the grit of a Cormac McCarthy novel, and the adventure and peril found in Cold Mountain. I expect this stunning novel to stay with me for a long time.”—Linda Grana, Reasonable Books, Lafayette, CA

State of Paradise by Laura van den Berg (Farrar; LJ starred review)

“Unnerving, odd, sometimes spooky, sometimes very funny. Here is a world of warped reality—by grief, by pandemic, by Major Weather Events, by technology, sometimes even by our own minds. This is one of Laura van den Berg’s best.”—Santiago Nocera, Greedy Reads, Baltimore, MD

The Anthropologists by Aysegül Savas (Bloomsbury)

The Anthropologists is a slim, impactful novella that cuts to the heart of human experience. Aysegül Savas conveys the complex vagaries and bone-deep loneliness of adulthood. This is a stunning and unique novel.”—Jo Swenson, Gibson’s Bookstore, Concord, NH

The Coin by Yasmin Zaher (Catapult; LJ starred review)

“Zaher has a powerful, unique voice that embodies notions about self, becoming naturalized in a place away from home, and what it means to be a woman with desires and obligations. This made me consider what it’s like to exist in the grey spaces.”—Viktor Hughes, Loudmouth Books, Indianapolis, IN

In the Media

People’s book of the week is The God of the Woods by Liz Moore (Riverhead; LJ starred review). Also getting attention are Masquerade by O.O. Sangoyomi (Forge; LJ starred review) and Teddy by Emily Dunlay (Harper). Britney Spears shares her favorite beach reads: The Paradise Problem by Christina Lauren (Gallery; LJ starred review), Swiped by L.M. Chilton (Gallery), and The Summer Pact by Emily Giffin (Ballantine). Plus, Anthony Fauci discusses his new memoir, On Call: A Doctor’s Journey in Public Service (Viking). 

A “Feast for Foodies” section spotlights The Taste of Things, based on characters in the novel The Passionate Epicure: La Vie et la Passion de Dodin-Bouffant, Gourmet by Marcel Rouff. “The Picks” section highlights Apple TV+’s Sunny, based on the novel by Colin O'Sullivan. There is also a feature on Kristina Kuzmic’s book I Can Fix This: And Other Lies I Told Myself While Parenting My Struggling Child (Penguin Life; LJ starred review). Plus, recipes from Edy Massih, Keep It Zesty: A Celebration of Lebanese Flavors & Culture from Edy’s Grocer (Harper; LJ starred review), and Kat Lieu, Modern Asian Kitchen: Essential and Easy Recipes for Ramen, Dumplings, Dim Sum, Stir-Fries, Rice Bowls, Pho, Bibimbaps, and More (Harvard Common). 

July’s Costco Connection features Kate Quinn’s latest novel, The Briar Club (Morrow; LJ starred review). 


NYT reviews Long Island Compromise by Taffy Brodesser-Akner (Random; LJ starred review): “All those well-timed twists, neat callbacks and tidy scenes are a mitzvah for this satisfying, touching novel. The talented Taffy Brodesser-Akner over here”; and State of Paradise by Laura van den Berg (Farrar; LJ starred review): “Van den Berg rejects the very concept of narrative cohesion, plunging the reader instead into a series of dreamscapes.”

Washington Post reviews The Heart in Winter by Kevin Barry (Doubleday; LJ starred review): “The Heart in Winter sees Barry once again attempting something new—and pulling it off with aplomb”; Bright Objects by Ruby Todd (S. & S.): “A little bit thriller, a little bit mystery, the novel’s genre elements are commendably propulsive. Some of its issues—uneven pacing, inconsistent characterization—are encountered frequently in debut novels and don’t obscure the fact that Todd’s confidence and talents augur a bright future”; and Loving Sylvia Plath: A Reclamation by Emily Van Duyne (Norton): “If your shelves (like mine) already groan with works by and about Plath, Hughes and their intimates, Van Duyne’s love letter to the poet may seem necessary. For those less obsessed, it is a volume you can safely skip.”

Briefly Noted

The Millions publishes “Most Anticipated: The Great Summer 2024 Preview.” 

LJ shares stories from the ALA conferencePW also has highlights.

The August Indie Next list is out, featuring #1 pick The Wedding People by Alison Espach (Holt; LJ starred review).

Audiofile announces the July Earphones Award winners

Amazon editors select the best books of July

The UK and Ireland shortlist for the TikTok Book Awards is announced

CrimeReads suggests 10 new books for the week

NYT counts down “100 Best Books of the 21st Century.” Authors like Stephen King, Marlon James, Honorée Fanonne Jeffers, Elin Hilderbrand, and Bonnie Garmus share their top tens.

Andrea Robin Skinner, daughter of Nobel winner Alice Munro, published an essay in Toronto Star revealing that her stepfather sexually abused her as a child, and that Munro stayed with him after learning about it. Washington Post reports on the revelations, as do Toronto Star, Time and NYT

NYT writes about a new crop of bookstores dedicated to romance readers. Plus, a list of “Beach Reads That Stand Up to Sand, Salt and SPF.”

LA Times reports on how Netflix’s popular literary adaptations have boosted book sales

At Today, Rebecca Yarros reveals the cover of the forthcoming third book in the “Empyrean” series, Onyx Storm, which publishes in January 2025.

Investigative journalist Richard Behar discusses his new book, Madoff: The Final Word (Avid Reader/S. & S.), with Washington Post

Yasmin Zaher, The Coin (Catapult; LJ starred review), talks with The Millions about “moralization, journalism, and Hermès.”

Labor organizer and scholar Jane F. McAlevey, author of No Shortcuts: Organizing for Power in the New Gilded Age (Oxford Univ.), dies at 59. NYT has an obituary.

Authors on Air

Chip Reid, Battle Scars: Twenty Years Later, 3d Battalion 5th Marines Looks Back at the Iraq War and How It Changed Their Lives (Casemate), discusses the mental health of service members with CBS Sunday Morning. See excerpt here.

Christian activist and author Kirk Cameron talks with FoxNews about his forthcoming adult book, Born To Be Brave: How To Be a Part of America’s Spiritual Comeback, due out in October from Post Hill. 

Daniel Silva, A Death in Cornwall (Harper), will be on GMA today. 

Dr. Anthony Youn, Younger for Life: Feel Great and Look Your Best with the New Science of Autojuvenation (Hanover Square), visits Live with Kelly and Mark.

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