Sunday, June 30, 2013


New from Little, Brown & Company: Skinner by Charlie Huston.

About the book, from the publisher:

Skinner founded his career in "asset protection" on fear. To touch anyone under his protection was to invite destruction. A savagely effective methodology, until Skinner's CIA handlers began to fear him as much as his enemies did and banished him to the hinterlands of the intelligence community.

Now, an ornate and evolving cyber-terrorist attack is about to end that long exile. His asset is Jae, a roboticist with a gift for seeing the underlying systems violently shaping a new era of global guerrilla warfare.

At the root of it all is a young boy, the innocent seed of a plot grown in the slums of Mumbai. Brought to flower, that plot will tip the balance of world power in a perilous new direction.

A combination of Le Carre spycraft with Stephenson techno-philosophy from the novelist hailed by the Washington Post as "the voice of twenty-first century crime fiction," SKINNER is Charlie Huston's masterpiece--a new kind of thriller for a new kind of world.
Visit Charlie Huston's website.

"On Depression"

New from the Johns Hopkins University Press: On Depression: Drugs, Diagnosis, and Despair in the Modern World by S. Nassir Ghaemi.

About the book, from the publisher:

In a culture obsessed with youth, financial success, and achieving happiness, is it possible to live an authentic, meaningful life? Nassir Ghaemi, director of the Mood Disorder Program at Tufts Medical Center, reflects on our society's current quest for happiness and rejection of any emotion resembling sadness. On Depression asks readers to consider the benefits of despair and the foibles of an unexamined life.

Too often depression as disease is mistreated or not treated at all. Ghaemi warns against the "pretenders" who confuse our understanding of depression—both those who deny disease and those who use psychiatric diagnosis "pragmatically" or unscientifically. But experiencing sadness, even depression, can also have benefits. Ghaemi asserts that we can create a "narrative of ourselves such that we know and accept who we are," leading to a deeper, lasting level of contentment and a more satisfying personal and public life.

Depression is complex, and we need guides to help us understand it, guides who comprehend it existentially as part of normal human experience and clinically as sometimes needing the right kind of treatment, including medications. Ghaemi discusses these guides in detail, thinkers like Viktor Frankl, Rollo May, Karl Jaspers, and Leston Havens, among others.

On Depression combines examples from philosophy and the history of medicine with psychiatric principles informed by the author's clinical experience with people who struggle with mental illness. He has seen great achievements arise from great suffering and feels that understanding depression can provide important insights into happiness.
Visit Nassir Ghaemi's website.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

"Visitation Street"

New from Dennis Lehane Books/Ecco: Visitation Street by Ivy Pochoda.

About the book, from the publisher:

Summer in Red Hook, Brooklyn, an isolated blue-collar neighborhood where hipster gourmet supermarkets push against tired housing projects and the East River opens into the bay. Bored and listless, fifteen-year-olds June and Val are looking for fun. Forget the boys, the bottles, the coded whistles. Val wants to do something wild and a little crazy: take a raft out onto the bay. But on the water during the humid night, the girls disappear. Only Val survives, washing ashore in the weeds, bruised and unconscious.

This shocking event echoes through the lives of Red Hook's diverse residents. Fadi, the Lebanese bodega owner, hopes that his shop is a place to share neighborhood news, and he trolls for information about June's disappearance. Cree, just beginning to pull it together after his father's murder, unwittingly makes himself the chief suspect in the investigation, but an enigmatic and elusive guardian is determined to keep him safe. Val contends with the shadow of her missing friend and a truth she's buried deep inside. Her teacher Jonathan, a Juilliard dropout and barfly, wrestles with dashed dreams and a past riddled with tragic sins.

In Visitation Street, Ivy Pochoda combines intensely vivid prose with breathtaking psychological insight to explore a cast of solitary souls, pulled by family, love, betrayal, and hope, who yearn for a chance to break free.
Learn more about the book and author at Ivy Pochoda's website.

The Page 69 Test: The Art of Disappearing.


New from Philomel: Belladonna by Fiona Paul.

About the book, from the publisher:

In Renaissance Italy, love, lust, intrigue and secret societies converge to stunning results!

In the second in the stunning Secrets of the Eternal Rose series, Cassandra Caravello is trying to forget Falco, the wild artist who ran off with her heart, as she grows closer to her strong, steady fiancĂ©, Luca. But Luca seems to have his own secrets. When he’s arrested by soldiers in the middle of the night, Cass’s life is once again thrown into chaos. She must save Luca, and that means finding the Book of the Eternal Rose—the only evidence that will prove he’s innocent.

So begins her journey to Florence, a city haunted by whispers of vampirism, secret soirees and clandestine meetings of the Order of the Eternal Rose. And home to Falco, who is working for the Order’s eerily stunning leader, the Belladonna herself.

Can Cass trust her heart to lead her to the truth this time?

Nothing is as it seems in this seductive thriller, where the truth may be the deadliest poison of all.

Another sensual edge-of-your-seat romance thriller that's just as alluring Venom. This historical romantic mystery is perfect for fans of Philippa Gregory's The Other Boleyn Girl, Anna Godbersen's The Luxe, Libba Bray's A Great and Terrible Beauty and Cecily Von Ziegesar's Gossip Girl.
Visit Fiona Paul's website.

Friday, June 28, 2013

"Forever, Interrupted"

New from Washington Square Press: Forever, Interrupted: A Novel by Taylor Jenkins Reid.

About the book, from the publisher:

“Have you ever heard of supernovas? They shine brighter than anything else in the sky and then fade out really quickly, a short burst of extraordinary energy. I like to think you and Ben were like that . . . in that short time, you had more passion than some people have in a lifetime.”

Elsie Porter is an average twentysomething and yet what happens to her is anything but ordinary. On a rainy New Year’s Day, she heads out to pick up a pizza for one. She isn’t expecting to see anyone else in the shop, much less the adorable and charming Ben Ross. Their chemistry is instant and electric. Ben cannot even wait twenty-four hours before asking to see her again. Within weeks, the two are head over heels in love. By May, they’ve eloped.

Only nine days later, Ben is out riding his bike when he is hit by a truck and killed on impact. Elsie hears the sirens outside her apartment, but by the time she gets downstairs, he has already been whisked off to the emergency room. At the hospital, she must face Susan, the mother-in-law she has never met—and who doesn’t even know Elsie exists.

Interweaving Elsie and Ben’s charmed romance with Elsie and Susan’s healing process, Forever, Interrupted will remind you that there’s more than one way to find a happy ending.
Visit Taylor Jenkins Reid's website.

"The Curiosity"

New from William Morrow: The Curiosity: A Novel by Stephen Kiernan.

About the book, from the publisher:

A powerful debut novel in which a man, frozen in the Arctic ice for more than a century, awakens in the present day and finds the greatest discovery is love...

The Curiosity

Dr. Kate Philo and her scientific exploration team make a breathtaking discovery in the Arctic: the body of a man buried deep in the ice. As a scientist in a groundbreaking project run by the egocentric and paranoid Erastus Carthage, Kate has brought small creatures—plankton, krill, shrimp—back to life for short periods of time. But the team's methods have never been attempted on larger life-forms.

Heedless of the potential consequences, Carthage orders that the frozen man be brought back to the lab in Boston and reanimated. The endeavor is named "The Lazarus Project." As the man begins to regain his memories, the team learns that he was—is—a judge, Jeremiah Rice, and the last thing he remembers is falling overboard into the Arctic Ocean in 1906. When news of the project and Jeremiah Rice breaks, it ignites a media firestorm and protests by religious fundamentalists.

Thrown together by fate, Kate and Jeremiah grow closer. But the clock is ticking and Jeremiah's new life is slipping away. With Carthage planning to exploit Jeremiah while he can, Kate must decide how far she is willing to go to protect the man she has come to love.

A gripping, poignant, and thoroughly original thriller, Stephen P. Kiernan's provocative debut novel raises disturbing questions about the very nature of life and humanity—man as a scientific subject, as a tabloid novelty, as a living being: a curiosity.
Visit Stephen Kiernan's website and blog.

Thursday, June 27, 2013


New from Ecco: Tampa by Alissa Nutting.

About the book, from the publisher:

Celeste Price is an eighth-grade English teacher in suburban Tampa. She's undeniably attractive. She drives a red Corvette with tinted windows. Her husband, Ford, is rich, square-jawed, and devoted to her.

But Celeste's devotion lies elsewhere. She has a singular sexual obsession—fourteen-year-old boys. Celeste pursues her craving with sociopathic meticulousness and forethought; her sole purpose in becoming a teacher is to fulfill her passion and provide her access to her compulsion. As the novel opens, fall semester at Jefferson Jr. High is beginning.

In mere weeks, Celeste has chosen and lured the lusciously naive Jack Patrick into her web. Jack is enthralled and in awe of his teacher, and, most important, willing to accept Celeste's terms for a secret relationship—car rides after school; rendezvous at Jack's house while his single father works late; body-slamming encounters in Celeste's empty classroom between periods.

Ever mindful of the danger—the perpetual risk of exposure, Jack's father's own attraction to her, and the ticking clock as Jack leaves innocent boyhood behind—the hyperbolically insatiable Celeste bypasses each hurdle with swift thinking and shameless determination, even when the solutions involve greater misdeeds than the affair itself. In slaking her sexual thirst, Celeste Price is remorseless and deviously free of hesitation, a monstress driven by pure motivation. She deceives everyone, and cares nothing for anyone or anything but her own pleasure.

With crackling, rampantly unadulterated prose, Tampa is a grand, uncompromising, seriocomic examination of want and a scorching literary debut.
Visit Alissa Nutting's website.

"Raven Flight"

New from Knopf Books for Young Readers: Raven Flight: A Shadowfell novel by Juliet Marillier.

About the book, from the publisher:

Neryn has finally found the rebel group at Shadowfell, and now her task is to seek out the elusive Guardians, vital to her training as a Caller. These four powerful beings have been increasingly at odds with human kind, and Neryn must prove her worth to them. She desperately needs their help to use her gift without compromising herself or the cause of overthrowing the evil King Keldec.

Neryn must journey with the tough and steadfast Tali, who looks on Neryn's love for the double agent Flint as a needless vulnerability. And perhaps it is. What Flint learns from the king will change the battlefield entirely—but in whose favor, no one knows.
Learn more about the book and author at Juliet Marillier's website.

Read--Coffee with a Canine: Juliet Marillier & Pippa, Gretel, and Sara.

The Page 69 Test: Seer of Sevenwaters.

The Page 69 Test: Flame of Sevenwaters.

Writers Read: Juliet Marillier (November 2012).

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

"Full Ratchet"

New from Viking: Full Ratchet: A Silas Cade Thriller by Mike Cooper.

About the book, from the publisher:

In Die Hard style, Silas Cade takes his atypical brand of "auditing" from Wall Street to Main Street

Fans of Lee Child's Jack Reacher and Vince Flynn's Mitch Rapp will want to add Silas Cade to their lineup. Cade, the tough-guy auditor antihero introduced in Clawback, employs a brand of financial reform that comes with plenty of firepower. Needing a respite from Wall Street, Cade jumps at a job opportunity in western Pennsylvania—but finds that Main Street is just as dirty.

The job seems easy enough—check out a Pittsburgh manufacturer and file a report—but Cade quickly discovers corruption at every level. His revelations catch the attentions of hair-trigger Russian mobsters and a blonde assassin named Harmony. Cade’s estranged brother is dragged into the fray as the tension builds to bullet-riddled showdowns across defunct steel mills, forests, and Appalachian fracking fields.

Cooper again delivers a timely plot involving Wall Street greed, financial corruption, and the plight of blue-collar workers.
Visit Mike Cooper's website.

"The Longings of Wayward Girls"

New from Washington Square Press: The Longings of Wayward Girls: A Novel by Karen Brown.

About the book, from the publisher:

It’s an idyllic New England summer, and Sadie is a precocious only child on the edge of adolescence. It seems like July and August will pass lazily by, just as they have every year before. But one day, Sadie and her best friend play a seemingly harmless prank on a neighborhood girl. Soon after, that same little girl disappears from a backyard barbecue—and she is never seen again. Twenty years pass, and Sadie is still living in the same quiet suburb. She’s married to a good man, has two beautiful children, and seems to have put her past behind her. But when a boy from her old neighborhood returns to town, the nightmares of that summer will begin to resurface, and its unsolved mysteries will finally become clear.
Visit Karen Brown's website.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

"Fin & Lady"

New from Sarah Crichton Books: Fin & Lady by Cathleen Schine.

About the book, from the publisher:

It’s 1964. Eleven-year-old Fin and his glamorous, worldly, older half sister, Lady, have just been orphaned, and Lady, whom Fin hasn’t seen in six years, is now his legal guardian and his only hope. That means Fin is uprooted from a small dairy farm in rural Connecticut to Greenwich Village, smack in the middle of the swinging ’60s. He soon learns that Lady—giddy, careless, urgent, and obsessed with being free—is as much his responsibility as he is hers.

So begins Fin & Lady, the lively, spirited new novel by Cathleen Schine, the author of the bestselling The Three Weissmanns of Westport. Fin and Lady lead their lives against the background of the ’60s, the civil rights movement, and the Vietnam War—Lady pursued by ardent, dogged suitors, Fin determined to protect his impulsive sister from them and from herself.

From a writer The New York Times has praised as “sparkling, crisp, clever, deft, hilarious, and deeply affecting,” Fin & Lady is a comic, romantic love story: the story of a brother and sister who must form their own unconventional family in increasingly unconventional times.
Visit Cathleen Schine's website.

Read--Coffee with a Canine: Cathleen Schine & Hector.

"Venus in Winter"

New from Berkley: Venus in Winter: A Novel of Bess of Hardwick by Gillian Bagwell.

About the book, from the publisher:

The author of The September Queen explores Tudor England with the tale of Bess of Hardwick—the formidable four-time widowed Tudor dynast who became one of the most powerful women in the history of England.

On her twelfth birthday, Bess of Hardwick receives the news that she is to be a waiting gentlewoman in the household of Lady Zouche. Armed with nothing but her razor-sharp wit and fetching looks, Bess is terrified of leaving home. But as her family has neither the money nor the connections to find her a good husband, she must go to facilitate her rise in society.

When Bess arrives at the glamorous court of King Henry VIII, she is thrust into a treacherous world of politics and intrigue, a world she must quickly learn to navigate. The gruesome fates of Henry’s wives convince Bess that marrying is a dangerous business. Even so, she finds the courage to wed not once, but four times. Bess outlives one husband, then another, securing her status as a woman of property. But it is when she is widowed a third time that she is left with a large fortune and even larger decisions—discovering that, for a woman of substance, the power and the possibilities are endless...
Visit Gillian Bagwell's website and Facebook page.

Monday, June 24, 2013

"The Strangers"

New from Dial: The Strangers: The Books of Elsewhere: Volume 4 by Jacqueline West.

About the book, from the publisher:

Olive thought she'd uncovered all the house's secrets. She was wrong.

It's Halloween night when strangers come to Linden Street...and something dear to Olive goes missing. To what lengths will she go to get it back? Can she trust the strangers? Will she turn to a new and dangerous magic within the paintings of Elsewhere? Or will she put her faith in her own worst enemies to save the people and home she loves?

The stakes grow higher, the secrets more dangerous, and mystery and magic abound as Olive, the boys, and the cats uncover the true nature of the house on Linden Street. A must-read fantasy series for fans of Pseudonymous Bosch, Coraline, and Septimus Heap.
Visit Jacqueline West's website and the The Books of Elsewhere website.

Read--Coffee with a Canine: Jacqueline West and Brom Bones (July 2011).

Writers Read: Jacqueline West.

"The Right Side of Wrong"

New from Poisoned Pen Press: The Right Side of Wrong (Red River Mystery Series) by Reavis Z. Wortham.

About the book, from the publisher:

It’s near the end of 1965 and Constable Cody Parker of Center Springs, Texas, has a frightening sense of gathering storm clouds. His dreams prove accurate when he is ambushed and nearly killed on a lonely country road during an unusually heavy snowfall. The attack leads locals to worry that a terrifying killer known as “The Skinner” has returned.

As his nephew, Cody, recovers, Constable Ned Parker struggles to connect a seemingly unrelated series of murders, and the people of northeast Texas wonder why their once peaceful community has suddenly become a dangerous place to live.

Investigating, Ned, Cody, and deputy John Washington cross paths with many colorful characters: cranky old Judge O.C. Rains; the jittery little farmer Isaac Reader; the Wilson boys, Ty Cobb and Jimmy Foxx; and a mysterious old man named Tom Bell. Of course, Ned’s preteen grandchildren, Top and Pepper, are underfoot at every turn.

When Cody follows his main suspect across the Rio Grande into Mexico, Ned understands that to save his nephew, he will have to cross more than a river: he will have to cross over to the right side of wrong.
Learn more about the author and the Red River mysteries at Reavis Z. Wortham's website.

Read--Coffee with a Canine: Reavis Z. Wortham and Willie.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

"The Lost Whale"

New from St. Martin's Press: The Lost Whale: The True Story of an Orca Named Luna by Michael Parfit and Suzanne Chisholm.

About the book, from the publisher:

The heartbreaking and true story of a lonely orca named Luna who befriended humans in Nootka Sound, off the coast of Vancouver Island by Michael Parfit and Suzanne Chisholm.

One summer in Nootka Sound on the west coast of Vancouver Island, British Columbia, a young killer whale called Luna got separated from his pod. Like humans, orcas are highly social and depend on their families, but Luna found himself desperately alone. So he tried to make contact with people. He begged for attention at boats and docks. He looked soulfully into people's eyes. He wanted to have his tongue rubbed. When someone whistled at him, he squeaked and whistled back. People fell in love with him, but the government decided that being friendly with Luna was bad for him, and tried to keep him away from humans. Policemen arrested people for rubbing Luna’s nose. Fines were levied. Undaunted, Luna refused to give up his search for connection and people went out to meet him, like smugglers carrying friendship through the dark. But does friendship work between species? People who loved Luna couldn't agree on how to help him. Conflict came to Nootka Sound. The government built a huge net. The First Nations’ members brought out their canoes. Nothing went as planned, and the ensuing events caught everyone by surprise and challenged the very nature of that special and mysterious bond we humans call friendship. The Lost Whale celebrates the life of a smart, friendly, determined, transcendent being from the sea who appeared among us like a promise out of the blue: that the greatest secrets in life are still to be discovered.
Learn more about Michael Parfit and Suzanne Chisholm.

"The Looking Glass Brother"

New from St. Martin's Press: The Looking Glass Brother by Peter von Ziegesar.

About the book, from the publisher:

Peter von Ziegesar had just moved to New York and was awaiting the birth of his first child when a dark shape stepped from the looking glass of his past on to a Greenwich Village street. The Looking Glass Brother is Peter von Ziegesar’s remarkable memoir of a life that began in the exquisite enclaves of Long Island’s gilded age families and is now lived, in part, as the keeper of his homeless and schizophrenic stepbrother, Little Peter. The Looking Glass Brother is a feast of memories from one of the last, great estates on Long Island’s Peacock Point. Summers were filled with the glistening water of the Long Island Sound, pristine beaches, croquet games, butlers in formal wear serving dinners and an endless stream of cocktails. When, after a string of affairs Peter's father left his mother and remarried, the idyll was broken and several stepchildren, including Little Peter, entered von Ziegesar’s life from the looking glass of his father’s new family. Little Peter was an angelic and brilliant young boy who spiraled down during adolescence to become one more homeless man living on the street. In this big-hearted memoir, Peter von Ziegesar mixes memories of life on Peacock Point with the turbulent joys of fatherhood and the responsibility he feels for his brother, a man with the same name as his, but a man who lives a desperate and very different life.
Visit Peter von Ziegesar's website.

Saturday, June 22, 2013

"Pterosaurs: Natural History, Evolution, Anatomy"

New from Princeton University Press: Pterosaurs: Natural History, Evolution, Anatomy by Mark P. Witton.

About the book, from the publisher:

For 150 million years, the skies didn't belong to birds--they belonged to the pterosaurs. These flying reptiles, which include the pterodactyls, shared the world with the nonavian dinosaurs until their extinction 65 million years ago. Some pterosaurs, such as the giant azhdarchids, were the largest flying animals of all time, with wingspans exceeding thirty feet and standing heights comparable to modern giraffes. This richly illustrated book takes an unprecedented look at these astonishing creatures, presenting the latest findings on their anatomy, ecology, and extinction.

Pterosaurs features some 200 stunning illustrations, including original paintings by Mark Witton and photos of rarely seen fossils. After decades of mystery, paleontologists have finally begun to understand how pterosaurs are related to other reptiles, how they functioned as living animals, and, despite dwarfing all other flying animals, how they managed to become airborne. Here you can explore the fossil evidence of pterosaur behavior and ecology, learn about the skeletal and soft-tissue anatomy of pterosaurs, and consider the newest theories about their cryptic origins. This one-of-a-kind book covers the discovery history, paleobiogeography, anatomy, and behaviors of more than 130 species of pterosaur, and also discusses their demise at the end of the Mesozoic.
  • The most comprehensive book on pterosaurs ever published
  • Features some 200 illustrations, including original paintings by the author
  • Covers every known species and major group of pterosaurs
  • Describes pterosaur anatomy, ecology, behaviors, diversity, and more
  • Encourages further study with 500 references to primary pterosaur literature
Visit Mark P. Witton's website.

"On the Floor"

New from Picador: On the Floor: A Novel by Aifric Campbell.

About the book, from the publisher:

A hard-living investment banker has three days to decide her destiny in this thrilling novel.

It has been 182 days of vodka and insomnia since Geri Molloy got dumped. A twenty-eight-year-old investment banker with a rare knack for numbers, Geri counts the days since her breakup with the same determination that has made her serious capital on her firm’s London trading floor. But it is January of 1991, and war in the Middle East is about to shake up the markets—and maybe also change the course of her career.

The firm’s biggest client is Felix Mann, a reclusive hedge fund manager in Hong Kong, who will only talk to Geri. But Geri is being pushed to her breaking point, and several rivals are hungry for a seat at the table. When she finds herself caught up in a high-stakes takeover, Felix is game for the power play—but his price tag is Geri’s future.

At once fiercely intelligent and utterly gripping, Aifric Campbell's On the Floor is a sharp-edged story about love and money, the cruel appraisals we make of one another, and what it really means for a woman to take control of her life.
Visit Aifric Campbell's website.

See Aifric Campbell's top 10 list of portrayals of working life in fiction.

Friday, June 21, 2013

"Redemption Mountain"

New from Henry Holt and Company: Redemption Mountain: A Novel by Gerry FitzGerald.

About the book, from the publisher:

In this emotional debut, a NY executive, restless in his success, is sent to W. Virginia and meets a small-town woman and her son who open his eyes to a richer life than he could have imagined.

On the surface, Charlie Burden and Natty Oaks could not be more different: She, the daughter of many generations of rural farmers; he, an executive at a multi-national engineering firm. But, in each other, they find the new lease on life they both so desperately need.

Natty dreams of a life beyond her small town. She is unhappily married to her high school crush (who now spends more time at the bar than at home) and passes the time nursing retired miners, coaching her son, The Pie Man's, soccer team and running the mountain trails she knows by heart, longing to get away from it all. Charlie has everything he ever thought he wanted, but after 25 years of climbing the corporate ladder, he no longer recognizes his own life: his job has become bureaucratic paper-pushing, his wife is obsessed with their country-club status, and his children have grown up and moved on. When he is sent to West Virginia to oversee a mining project, it is a chance to escape his stuffy life; to get involved, instead of watching from the sidelines. Arriving in Red Bone, though, he gets more than he bargained for: his new friends become the family he was missing and Natty, the woman who reminds him what happiness feels like. When his company's plans threaten to destroy Natty's family land, his loyalties are questioned and he is forced to choose between his old life and his new love in a fight for Redemption Mountain.
Visit Gerry FitzGerald's website.

"Green-Eyed Lady"

New from Minotaur/Thomas Dunne Books: Green-Eyed Lady: A Mystery by Chuck Greaves.

About the book, from the publisher:

Award-winning author Chuck Greaves returns with the rollicking sequel to his acclaimed debut novel, Hush Money.

U.S. Senate candidate Warren Burkett has a history of marital infidelity. Three weeks before Election Day, Burkett comes to the aid of a beautiful green-eyed lady, only to find himself alone and naked in a stranger’s home from which a priceless painting is missing. As the resulting scandal threatens to tilt the election, the painting turns up in a most unexpected place . . . and so does a dead body.

Hired to defend Burkett and unravel the deepening mystery, attorney Jack MacTaggart must traverse a minefield of ruthless politicians, felonious art dealers, swarming paparazzi, the amorous wife of Burkett’s billionaire opponent, her mobbed-up brother, and a district attorney with an old score to settle.

With the electoral clock ticking and the press following his every move, Jack’s investigation leads him on a roller-coaster ride through the lofty heights and gritty depths of Los Angeles and Southern California, lending new meaning to the adage that all’s fair in love and politics.
Learn more about the book and author at C. Joseph Greaves's website.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

"Wyatt Earp: A Vigilante Life"

New from Hill and Wang: Wyatt Earp: A Vigilante Life by Andrew C. Isenberg.

About the book, from the publisher:

In popular culture, Wyatt Earp is the hero of the Gunfight at the O.K. Corral in Tombstone, Arizona, and a beacon of rough justice in the tumultuous American West. The subject of dozens of films, he has been invoked in battles against organized crime (in the 1930s), communism (in the 1950s), and al-Qaeda (after 2001).

Yet as the historian Andrew C. Isenberg reveals in Wyatt Earp: A Vigilante Life, the Hollywood Earp is largely a fiction—one created by none other than Earp himself. The lawman played on-screen by Henry Fonda and Burt Lancaster is stubbornly duty-bound; in actuality, Earp led a life of impulsive lawbreaking and shifting identities. When he wasn’t wearing a badge, he was variously a thief, a brothel bouncer, a gambler, and a confidence man. As Isenberg writes, “He donned and shucked off roles readily, whipsawing between lawman and lawbreaker, and pursued his changing ambitions recklessly, with little thought to the cost to himself, and still less thought to the cost, even the deadly cost, to others.”

By 1900, Earp’s misdeeds had caught up with him: his involvement as a referee in a fixed heavyweight prizefight brought him national notoriety as a scoundrel. Stung by the press, Earp set out to rebuild his reputation. He spent his last decades in Los Angeles, where he befriended Western silent film actors and directors. Having tried and failed over the course of his life to invent a better future for himself, in the end he invented a better past. Isenberg argues that even though Earp, who died in 1929, did not live to see it, Hollywood’s embrace of him as a paragon of law and order was his greatest confidence game of all.

A searching account of the man and his enduring legend, and a book about our national fascination with extrajudicial violence, Wyatt Earp: A Vigilante Life is a resounding biography of a singular American figure.

"The Snail Darter and the Dam"

New from Yale University Press: The Snail Darter and the Dam: How Pork-Barrel Politics Endangered a Little Fish and Killed a River by Zygmunt J. B. Plater.

About the book, from the publisher:

Even today, thirty years after the legal battles to save the endangered snail darter, the little fish that blocked completion of a TVA dam is still invoked as an icon of leftist extremism and governmental foolishness. In this eye-opening book, the lawyer who with his students fought and won the Supreme Court case—known officially as Tennessee Valley Authority v. Hill—tells the hidden story behind one of the nation’s most significant environmental law battles.

The realities of the darter’s case, Plater asserts, have been consistently mischaracterized in politics and the media. This book offers a detailed account of the six-year crusade against a pork-barrel project that made no economic sense and was flawed from the start. In reality TVA’s project was designed for recreation and real estate development. And at the heart of the little group fighting the project in the courts and Congress were family farmers trying to save their homes and farms, most of which were to be resold in a corporate land development scheme. Plater’s gripping tale of citizens navigating the tangled corridors of national power stimulates important questions about our nation’s governance, and at last sets the snail darter’s record straight.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

"Always Watching"

New from St. Martin's Press: Always Watching by Chevy Stevens.

About the book, from the publisher:

She helps people put their demons to rest.

But she has a few of her own…

In the lockdown ward of a psychiatric hospital, Dr. Nadine Lavoie is in her element. She has the tools to help people, and she has the desire—healing broken families is what she lives for. But Nadine doesn’t want to look too closely at her own past because there are whole chunks of her life that are black holes. It takes all her willpower to tamp down her recurrent claustrophobia, and her daughter, Lisa, is a runaway who has been on the streets for seven years.

When a distraught woman, Heather Simeon, is brought into the Psychiatric Intensive Care Unit after a suicide attempt, Nadine gently coaxes her story out of her—and learns of some troubling parallels with her own life. Digging deeper, Nadine is forced to confront her traumatic childhood, and the damage that began when she and her brother were brought by their mother to a remote commune on Vancouver Island. What happened to Nadine? Why was their family destroyed? And why does the name Aaron Quinn, the group’s leader, bring complex feelings of terror to Nadine even today?

And then, the unthinkable happens, and Nadine realizes that danger is closer to home than she ever imagined. She has no choice but to face what terrifies her the most…and fight back.

Sometimes you can leave the past, but you can never escape.

Told with the trademark powerful storytelling that has had critics praising her work as “Gripping” (Kirkus), “Jaw-dropping” (Publishers Weekly) and “Crackling with suspense” (People magazine), ALWAYS WATCHING shows why Chevy Stevens is one of the most mesmerizing new talents of our day.
Learn more about the book and author at the official Chevy Stevens website and blog.

Read--Coffee with a Canine: Chevy Stevens and Annie.

"The Shadow Tracer"

New from Dutton: The Shadow Tracer by Meg Gardiner.

About the book, from the publisher:

An explosive stand-alone thriller from the Edgar Award–winning writer Stephen King called “the next suspense superstar”

Can a person ever really disappear for good by going off the grid? And what happens when vanishing is no longer an option?

Sarah Keller is a single mother to five-year-old Zoe, living quietly in Oklahoma. She’s also a skip tracer, an expert in tracking people who’ve gone on the lam to avoid arrest, prosecution, or debt—pinpointing their locations to bring them to justice.

When a school bus accident sends Zoe to the ER, their quiet life explodes. Zoe’s medical tests reveal what Sarah has been hiding: Zoe is not her daughter. Zoe’s biological mother—Sarah’s sister, Beth—was murdered shortly after the child’s birth. And Zoe’s father is missing and presumed dead.

With no way to prove her innocence, Sarah must abandon her carefully constructed life and go on the run. Chased by cops, federal agents, and the group responsible for Beth’s murder, Sarah embarks on a desperate journey. Can her knowledge as a skip tracer help her stay off the grid, remain one step ahead of her pursuers, and find a way to save her daughter?

Meg Gardiner is acclaimed for her richly drawn characters, propulsive plotting, relentless suspense, and shocking twists. The Shadow Tracer delivers on those fronts and more.
Learn more about the author and her work at Meg Gardiner's website and blog.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

"The Execution of Noa P. Singleton"

New from Crown: The Execution of Noa P. Singleton by Elizabeth L. Silver.

About the book, from the publisher:

An unforgettable and unpredictable debut novel of guilt, punishment, and the stories we tell ourselves to survive

Noa P. Singleton never spoke a word in her own defense throughout a brief trial that ended with a jury finding her guilty of first-degree murder. Ten years later, having accepted her fate, she sits on death row in a maximum-security penitentiary, just six months away from her execution date.

Seemingly out of the blue, she is visited by Marlene Dixon, a high-powered Philadelphia attorney who is also the mother of the woman Noa was imprisoned for killing. Marlene tells Noa that she has changed her mind about the death penalty and Noa’s sentence, and will do everything in her considerable power to convince the governor to commute the sentence to life in prison, in return for the one thing Noa is unwilling to trade: her story.

Marlene desperately wants Noa to reveal the events that led to her daughter’s death – events that Noa has never shared with a soul. With death looming, Marlene believes that Noa may finally give her the answers she needs, though Noa is far from convinced that Marlene deserves the salvation she alone can deliver. Inextricably linked by murder but with very different goals, Noa and Marlene wrestle with the sentences life itself can impose while they confront the best and worst of what makes us human in this haunting tale of love, anguish, and deception.
Visit Elizabeth L. Silver's website.

"Death of a Dyer"

New from Minotaur Books: Death of a Dyer: Will Rees Mysteries (Volume 2) by Eleanor Kuhns.

About the book, from the publisher:

Will Rees feels at home. It’s been a long time since he last felt this way—not since before his wife died years ago and he took to the road as a traveling weaver. Now, in 1796, Rees is back on his Maine farm, living with his teenaged son, David, and his housekeeper, Lydia—whose presence contributes more towards his happiness than he’s ready to admit. But his domestic bliss is shattered the morning a visitor brings news of an old friend’s murder.

Nate Bowditch and Rees hadn't spoken in many long years, but as children they were closer than brothers, and Rees feels his loss acutely. Asked to look into the circumstances surrounding Nate’s death, Rees simply can’t refuse. At the Bowditch farmstead, Rees quickly discovers that everyone—from Nate’s frosty wife to his missing son to the shy serving girl—is hiding something. But are any of them actually capable of murder? Or does the answer lie elsewhere, behind stones no one even knew needed unturning?

Death of a Dyer once again proves Eleanor Kuhns’s remarkable ability to spin a captivating story of a fascinating era and capture the light and darker sides of human nature on the page.
Visit Eleanor Kuhns's blog and Facebook page.

Monday, June 17, 2013

"Queen Bee of Tuscany"

New from Farrar, Straus and Giroux: Queen Bee of Tuscany: The Redoubtable Janet Ross by Ben Downing.

About the book, from the publisher:

An engrossing examination of a fascinating woman and her irresistible world

Ben Downing’s Queen Bee of Tuscany brings an extraordinary Victorian back to life. Born into a distinguished intellectual family and raised among luminaries such as Dickens and Thackeray, Janet Ross married at eighteen and went to live in Egypt. There, for the next six years, she wrote for the London Times, hobnobbed with the developer of the Suez Canal, and humiliated pashas in horse races. In 1867 she moved to Florence, Italy where she spent the remaining sixty years of her life writing a series of books and hosting a colorful miscellany of friends and neighbors, from Mark Twain to Bernard Berenson, at Poggio Gherardo, her house in the hills above the city. Eventually she became the acknowledged doyenne of the Anglo-Florentine colony, as it was known. Yet she was also immersed in the rural life of Tuscany: An avid agriculturalist, she closely supervised the farms on her estate and the sharecroppers who worked them, often pitching in on grape and olive harvests.

Spirited, erudite, and supremely well-connected, Ross was one of the most dynamic women of her day. Her life offers a fascinating window on fascinating times, from the Risorgimento to the rise of fascism.

Encompassing all this rich history, Queen Bee of Tuscany is a panoramic portrait of an age, a family, and our evolving love affair with Tuscany.
Visit Ben Downing's website.

"In the House upon the Dirt between the Lake and the Woods"

New from Soho Press: In the House upon the Dirt between the Lake and the Woods by Matt Bell.

About the book, from the publisher:

In this epic, mythical debut novel, a newly-wed couple escapes the busy confusion of their homeland for a distant and almost-uninhabited lakeshore. They plan to live there simply, to fish the lake, to trap the nearby woods, and build a house upon the dirt between where they can raise a family. But as their every pregnancy fails, the child-obsessed husband begins to rage at this new world: the song-spun objects somehow created by his wife's beautiful singing voice, the giant and sentient bear that rules the beasts of the woods, the second moon weighing down the fabric of their starless sky, and the labyrinth of memory dug into the earth beneath their house.

This novel, from one of our most exciting young writers, is a powerful exploration of the limits of parenthood and marriage—and of what happens when a marriage’s success is measured solely by the children it produces, or else the sorrow that marks their absence.
Visit Matt Bell's website.

In the House upon the Dirt between the Lake and the Woods is "a wild and powerful fable that on its surface is about a couple trying to begin a family in an odd, desolate setting," says Amy Brill. "The writing is so spare and magnificent and the events therein so profoundly strange that reading it is just exhilarating."

Sunday, June 16, 2013

"The Widow Waltz"

New from Viking: The Widow Waltz by Sally Koslow.

About the book, from the publisher:

Georgia Waltz has things many people only dream of: a plush Manhattan apartment overlooking Central Park, a Hamptons beach house, valuable jewels and art, two bright daughters, and a husband she adores, even after decades of marriage. It’s only when Ben suddenly drops dead from a massive coronary while training for the New York City Marathon that Georgia discovers her husband—a successful lawyer—has left them nearly penniless. Their wonderland was built on lies.

As the family attorney scours emptied bank accounts, Georgia must not only look for a way to support her family, she needs to face the revelation that Ben was not the perfect husband he appeared to be, just as her daughters—now ensconced back at home with secrets of their own—have to accept that they may not be returning to their lives in Paris and at Stanford subsidized by the Bank of Mom and Dad. As she uncovers hidden resilience, Georgia’s sudden midlife shift forces her to consider who she is and what she truly values. That Georgia may also find new love in the land of Spanx and stretch marks surprises everyone—most of all, her.

Sally Koslow’s fourth novel is deftly told through the alternating viewpoints of her remarkable female protagonists as they plumb for the grit required to reinvent their lives. Inspiring, funny, and deeply satisfying, The Widow Waltz explores in a profound way the bonds between mothers and daughters, belligerent siblings, skittish lovers, and bitter rivals as they discover the power of forgiveness, and healing, all while asking, “What is family, really?”
Visit Sally Koslow's website and Facebook page.

"The Last Kind Word"

New from Minotaur Books: The Last Kind Word: Twin Cities P.I. Mac McKenzie Novels (Volume 10 of 13) by David Housewright.

About the book, from the publisher:

Rushmore McKenzie agrees to go undercover to help the ATF track a cache of stolen guns—after all, what could possible go wrong?

Rushmore McKenzie is both a millionaire and an unlicensed PI, which means he can afford to do the occasional favor and, as a former detective for the St. Paul (Minnesota) Police Department, he's got the necessary skills and connections to do them right. But this time, he's really stepped in it.

When the ATF gets a lead on a much sought-after cache of illegal guns near the Canadian border, they call McKenzie in to help them track down the elusive gunrunners. Their only lead is a guy who is part of a small-time gang of armed robbers working north of the Twin Cities. Their idea is for McKenzie to infiltrate the group and wait for them to lead him to the guns. Their plan is to fix McKenzie with a false identity as a serious bad guy and then fake an escape with the captured gang member. Which seemed like a bad idea to McKenzie at the time, but even he had no idea just how bad things were going to get.
Visit David Housewright's website and Facebook page.

Saturday, June 15, 2013


New from Tor Books: Requiem: The Psalms of Isaak (Volume 4 of 5) by Ken Scholes.

About the book, from the publisher:
Ken Scholes’s debut novel, Lamentation, was an event in fantasy. Heralded as a “mesmerizing debut novel” by Publishers Weekly, and a “vividly imagined SF-fantasy hybrid set in a distant, postapocalyptic future” by Booklist, the series gained many fans. It was followed by Canticle and Antiphon. Now comes the fourth book in The Psalms of Isaak, Requiem.

Who is the Crimson Empress, and what does her conquest of the Named Lands really mean? Who holds the keys to the Moon Wizard’s Tower?

The plots within plots are expanding as the characters seek their way out of the maze of intrigue. The world is expanding as they discover lands beyond their previous carefully controlled knowledge. Hidden truths reveal even deeper truths, and nothing is as it seemed to be.
Learn more about the author and his work at Ken Scholes's website.

The Page 69 Test: Lamentation.

The Page 69 Test: Antiphon.

"Her Last Breath"

New from Minotaur Books: Her Last Breath (Kate Burkholder Series #5) by Linda Castillo.

About the book, from the publisher:

An extraordinarily beautiful Amish woman, a dangerous femme fatale, is the central figure in a story that reveals a dark side of Painters Mill and its seemingly perfect Amish world

A rainy night, an Amish father returning home with his three children, a speeding car hurtling toward them out of nowhere.

What at first seems like a tragic, but routine car accident suddenly takes on a more sinister cast as evidence emerges that nothing about the crash is accidental. But who would want to kill an Amish deacon and two of his children? He leaves behind a grieving widow and a young boy who clings to life in the intensive care wing of a hospital, unable to communicate. He may be the only one who knows what happened that night. Desperate to find out who killed her best friend’s husband and why, Kate begins to suspect she is not looking for a reckless drunk, but instead is on the trail of a cold blooded killer amid the residents of Painter’s Mill. It is a search that takes her on a chilling journey into the darkest reaches of the human heart and makes her question everything she has ever believed about the Amish culture into which she was born.
Learn more about the author and her work at Linda Castillo's website.

The Page 69 Test: Sworn to Silence.

My Book, The Movie: Pray for Silence.

Friday, June 14, 2013

"Hollywood Strip"

New from Forge Books: Hollywood Strip by Shamron Moore.

About the book, from the publisher:

Callie Lambert is sexy, beautiful, ambitious—and undiscovered.

Callie knows exactly what she wants: fame, fortune, and a fabulous career as a Hollywood actress.

Packing her bags, Callie leaves her mundane life in Michigan for Los Angeles, determined to be a star. Her schedule is grueling: waitressing long hours to make ends meet and auditioning for anything and everything in the hopes that she'll land a big break. After suffering what feels like thousands of heartbreaking rejections, she finally lands the lead in an unlikely hit movie, Nympho Cheerleaders Attack!, bringing her dry spell to an end.

The film opens a new world of glamorous possibilities. Coupled with a budding romance with Evan Marquardt, a sexy, chart-topping singer, Callie's on top of the world. But she's thrown for a loop when tragedy strikes, unleashing a string of events she never in her wildest dreams anticipated. She quickly discovers that success in Hollywood creates a feeding frenzy of money-hungry producers, two-faced friends, and privacy-robbing paparazzi. It seems that life as an on-the-rise starlet is not as glamorous as she once imagined...

Dishing the dirt on the secret world of Hollywood’s nasty side, SHAMRON MOORE's Hollywood Strip is a heartfelt story about ambition, empowerment, and what it means to make it in the City of Angels.
Visit Shamron Moore's website.

"Wisp of a Thing"

New from Tor Books: Wisp of a Thing by Alex Bledsoe.

About the book, from the publisher:

Alex Bledsoe’s The Hum and the Shiver was named one of the Best Fiction Books of 2011 by Kirkus Reviews. Now with Wisp of a Thing Bledsoe returns to the isolated ridges and hollows of the Smoky Mountains to spin an equally enchanting tale of music and magic older than the hills….

Touched by a very public tragedy, musician Rob Quillen comes to Cloud County, Tennessee, in search of a song that might ease his aching heart. All he knows of the mysterious and reclusive Tufa is what he has read on the internet: they are an enigmatic clan of swarthy, black-haired mountain people whose historical roots are lost in myth and controversy. Some people say that when the first white settlers came to the Appalachians centuries ago, they found the Tufa already there. Others hint that Tufa blood brings special gifts.

Rob finds both music and mystery in the mountains. Close-lipped locals guard their secrets, even as Rob gets caught up in a subtle power struggle he can’t begin to comprehend. A vacationing wife goes missing, raising suspicions of foul play, and a strange feral girl runs wild in the woods, howling in the night like a lost spirit.

Change is coming to Cloud County, and only the night wind knows what part Rob will play when the last leaf falls from the Widow’s Tree…and a timeless curse must be broken at last.
Learn more about the book and author at Alex Bledsoe's website.

My Book, The Movie: Blood Groove.

The Page 69 Test: Burn Me Deadly.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

"Hour of the Rat"

New from Soho Crime: Hour of the Rat by Lisa Brackmann.

About the book, from the publisher:

Iraq War vet Ellie McEnroe has a pretty good life in Beijing, representing the work of controversial dissident Chinese artist Zhang Jianli. Even though Zhang’s mysterious disappearance of over a year ago has her in the sights of the Chinese authorities. Even though her Born-Again mother has come for a visit and shows no signs of leaving. But when her mom takes up with “that nice Mr. Zhou next door,” Ellie decides that it’s time to get out of town—given her mother’s past bad choices of men, no good can come of this.

An old Army buddy, Dog Turner, gives her the perfect excuse. His unstable brother Jason has disappeared in picturesque Yangshuo, a famous tourist destination, and though Ellie knows it’s a long shot, she agrees to try to find him. At worst, she figures she’ll have a few days of fun in some gorgeous scenery.

But her plans for a relaxing vacation are immediately complicated when her mother and the new boyfriend tag along. And as soon as she starts asking questions about the missing Jason, Ellie realizes that she’s stumbled into a dangerous conspiracy that may or may not involve a sinister biotech company, eco-terrorists, an art-obsessed Chinese billionaire and lots of cats—one that will take her on a wild chase through some of China’s most beautiful—and most surreal—places.
Visit Lisa Brackmann's website and blog.

"The Skies Belong to Us"

New from Crown: The Skies Belong to Us: Love and Terror in the Golden Age of Hijacking by Brendan I. Koerner.

About the book, from the publisher:

In an America torn apart by the Vietnam War and the demise of sixties idealism, airplane hijackings were astonishingly routine. Over a five-year period starting in 1968, the desperate and disillusioned seized commercial jets nearly once a week, using guns, bombs, and jars of acid. Some hijackers wished to escape to foreign lands, where they imagined being hailed as heroes; others aimed to swap hostages for sacks of cash. Their criminal exploits mesmerized the country, never more so than when the young lovers at the heart of Brendan I. Koerner’s The Skies Belong to Us pulled off the longest-distance hijacking in American history.

A shattered Army veteran and a mischievous party girl, Roger Holder and Cathy Kerkow commandeered Western Airlines Flight 701 as a vague protest against the war. Through a combination of savvy and dumb luck, the couple managed to flee across an ocean with a half-million dollars in ransom, a feat that made them notorious around the globe. Koerner spent four years chronicling this madcap tale, which involves a cast of characters ranging from exiled Black Panthers to African despots to French movie stars. He combed through over 4,000 declassified documents and interviewed scores of key figures in the drama—including one of the hijackers, whom Koerner discovered living in total obscurity. Yet The Skies Belong to Us is more than just an enthralling yarn about a spectacular heist and its bittersweet, decades-long aftermath. It is also a psychological portrait of America at its most turbulent, and a testament to the madness that can grip a nation when politics fail.
Visit Brendan I. Koerner's website.

The Page 99 Test: Brendan Koerner's Now the Hell Will Start.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

"Witch Fire"

New from Bloomsbury USA: Witch Fire by Laura Powell.

About the book, from the publisher:

Lucas and Glory are hard at work in WICA (Witchkind Intelligence and Covert Affairs). As part of their training, they learn more about the witch-terrorist organization Endor. It is believed that Endor has infiltrated a boarding school for young witches in Switzerland, so WICA sends their two youngest agents--Lucas and Glory--to the school undercover. There, they learn more about an experimental brain implant that blocks the power of the fae. It's a dangerous procedure...more so than they could ever have imagined.
Visit Laura Powell's website.

Learn about Laura Powell's top ten heroes in disguise.

"Until She Comes Home"

New from Dutton: Until She Comes Home by Lori Roy.

About the book, from the publisher:

Winner of an Edgar Award for Best First Novel for Bent Road, Lori Roy returns with Until She Comes Home, a tale of spellbinding suspense in which a pair of seemingly unrelated murders crumbles the facade of a changing Detroit neighborhood.

In 1958 Detroit, on Alder Avenue, neighbors struggle to care for neighbors amid a city ripe with conflicts that threaten their peaceful street.

Grace, Alder’s only expectant mother, eagerly awaits her first born. Best friend Julia prepares to welcome twin nieces. And Malina sets the tone with her stylish dresses, tasteful home, and ironfisted stewardship of St. Alban’s bake sale.

Life erupts when childlike Elizabeth disappears while in the care of Grace and Julia. All the ladies fear the recent murder of a black woman at the factory on Willingham Avenue where their husbands work may warn of what has become of Elizabeth, and they worry what is yet to become of Julia—the last to see Elizabeth alive.

The men mount an around-the-clock search, leaving their families vulnerable to sinister elements hidden in plain sight. Only Grace knows what happened, but her mother warns her not to tell. “No man wants to know this about his wife.” Ashamed that her silence puts loved ones in harm’s way, Grace gravitates toward the women of Willingham Avenue, who recognize her suffering as their own. Through their acceptance, Grace conquers her fear and dares to act.

On Alder Avenue, vicious secrets bind friends, neighbors, and spouses. For the wicked among them, the walk home will be long.
Visit Lori Roy's website and blog.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

"The Deserters"

New from The Penguin Press: The Deserters: A Hidden History of World War II by Charles Glass.

About the book, from the publisher:

A groundbreaking history of ordinary soldiers struggling on the front lines, The Deserters offers a completely new perspective on the Second World War. Charles Glass—renowned journalist and author of the critically acclaimed Americans in Paris: Life and Death Under Nazi Occupation—delves deep into army archives, personal diaries, court-martial records, and self-published memoirs to produce this dramatic and heartbreaking portrait of men overlooked by their commanders and ignored by history.

Surveying the 150,000 American and British soldiers known to have deserted in the European Theater, The Deserters: A Hidden History of World War II tells the life stories of three soldiers who abandoned their posts in France, Italy, and Africa. Their deeds form the backbone of Glass’s arresting portrait of soldiers pushed to the breaking point, a sweeping reexamination of the conditions for ordinary soldiers.

With the grace and pace of a novel, The Deserters moves beyond the false extremes of courage and cowardice to reveal the true experience of the frontline soldier. Glass shares the story of men like Private Alfred Whitehead, a Tennessee farm boy who earned Silver and Bronze Stars for bravery in Normandy—yet became a gangster in liberated Paris, robbing Allied supply depots along with ordinary citizens. Here also is the story of British men like Private John Bain, who deserted three times but never fled from combat—and who endured battles in North Africa and northern France before German machine guns cut his legs from under him. The heart of The Deserters resides with men like Private Steve Weiss, an idealistic teenage volunteer from Brooklyn who forced his father—a disillusioned First World War veteran—to sign his enlistment papers because he was not yet eighteen. On the Anzio beachhead and in the Ardennes forest, as an infantryman with the 36th Division and as an accidental partisan in the French Resistance, Weiss lost his illusions about the nobility of conflict and the infallibility of American commanders.

Far from the bright picture found in propaganda and nostalgia, the Second World War was a grim and brutal affair, a long and lonely effort that has never been fully reported—to the detriment of those who served and the danger of those nurtured on false tales today. Revealing the true costs of conflict on those forced to fight, The Deserters is an elegant and unforgettable story of ordinary men desperately struggling in extraordinary times.
Visit Charles Glass's website.

"The Illusion of Separateness"

New from Harper: The Illusion of Separateness: A Novel by Simon Van Booy.

About the book, from the publisher:

The characters in Simon Van Booy's The Illusion of Separateness discover at their darkest moments of fear and isolation that they are not alone, that they were never alone, that every human being is a link in a chain we cannot see. This gripping novel—inspired by true events—tells the interwoven stories of a deformed German infantryman; a lonely British film director; a young, blind museum curator; two Jewish American newlyweds separated by war; and a caretaker at a retirement home for actors in Santa Monica. They move through the same world but fail to perceive their connections until, through seemingly random acts of selflessness, a veil is lifted to reveal the vital parts they have played in one another's lives, and the illusion of their separateness.
Visit Simon Van Booy's website.

Writers Read: Simon Van Booy (June 2009).

Monday, June 10, 2013

"Bobcat and Other Stories"

New from Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill: Bobcat and Other Stories by Rebecca Lee.

About the book, from the publisher:

Rebecca Lee, one of our most gifted and original short story writers, guides readers into a range of landscapes, both foreign and domestic, crafting stories as rich as novels. A student plagiarizes a paper and holds fast to her alibi until she finds herself complicit in the resurrection of one professor’s shadowy past. A dinner party becomes the occasion for the dissolution of more than one marriage. A woman is hired to find a wife for the one true soulmate she’s ever found. In all, Rebecca Lee traverses the terrain of infidelity, obligation, sacrifice, jealousy, and yet finally, optimism. Showing people at their most vulnerable, Lee creates characters so wonderfully flawed, so driven by their desire, so compelled to make sense of their human condition, that it’s impossible not to feel for them when their fragile belief in romantic love, domestic bliss, or academic seclusion fails to provide them with the sort of force field they’d expected.

"Iva Honeysuckle Meets Her Match"

New from Hyperion Books for Children: Iva Honeysuckle Meets Her Match by Candice Ransom, illustrated by Heather Ross.

About the book, from the publisher:

Uncertain, Virginia is no place for an explorer like Iva Honeysuckle to spend the summer. When Iva finds out her family is going on vacation, she's thrilled. She knows she will make her next great discovery at Stingray Point. The very name promises adventure and danger.

Iva soon realizes that Stingray Point isn't the exciting place she thought it was. But then Iva hears about the legend of Chessie, the town's very own sea monster. Spotting Chessie would blow all other discoveries out of the water.

Stalking a sea monster isn't as easy as it looks. Iva needs a partner—all the best discoverers have one. Iva may have the brains and determination to find Chessie, but she needs someone with a healthy dose of luck. When Iva realizes just who happens to be her perfect match, it will be her greatest discovery of all.
Visit Candice Ransom's website.

Sunday, June 9, 2013

"The Navigator"

New from Forge Books: The Navigator by Michael Pocalyko.

About the book, from the publisher:

Wall Street comes to Washington in Michael Pocalyko’s The Navigator.

On the darkest night of 1945, a 20-year-old B-24 navigator assists in the liberation of a German concentration camp. His haunting trauma is prologue to destiny.

Flash forward to present-day Manhattan. Warren Hunter, reigning master of the financial universe, is poised to close the world’s first trillion dollar deal. ViroSat is the Street’s biggest-ever technology play—an entirely new worldwide communication system. It will catapult his investment bank and the global economy into a bright future . . . if the deal goes through.

In Washington, ViroSat captures the attention of Senate political aide Julia Toussaint. Meanwhile, battered tech start-up veteran Rick Yeager has just landed his dream job at a mysterious but well-connected financial firm whose partners want a piece of the action.

Warren, Julia, and Rick are caught in a web of intrigue, money, power, and dangerous secrets. Coincidences are not what they seem as the past collides with the present in a way that will change their lives forever.

A gripping story written by a consummate insider from both Washington and Wall Street, Michael Pocalyko’s The Navigator is a furiously-paced parable of our troubled age.
Visit Michael Pocalyko's website.

"The Hundred Dresses"

New from Bloomsbury USA: The Hundred Dresses: The Most Iconic Styles of Our Time by Erin McKean, illustrated by Donna Mehalko.

About the book, from the publisher:

The dress is the last bit of femininity in our closets; it's the only item of clothing which (most) men and women don't share. Wearing a dress is a powerful way for women to express themselves--and every style conveys a different message. Inspired by the Eleanor Estes' children's classic The Hundred Dresses, Erin McKean's classic-to-be by the same title, with chic illustrations by Donna Mehalko, is a definitive look at the dresses, vintage and modern, that make an inarguable statement about the woman who wears them.

Each evocatively illustrated entry identifies one of a hundred different dresses accompanied by a witty and informative look at the history of that particular style, famous wearers (if applicable), and what message, subtle or overt, is conveyed by the dress. Notes on where such a style could be observed and accessories of the wearer are also included.

Featured are The Wench; The Sari; The Vreeland; The Wrap; The Austen; The Beckham; The Siren (any style, as long as it's red); The Chanel Ingenue; The Caftan; The Guinivere; The Jackie; The Slip Dress; The Biohazard (any dress dangerous to bystanders or the wearer: think Lady Gaga); and scores more. The book also includes a suggested reading list of fashion books, dresses from literature, and an index.

Part style commentary, part fashion blueprint, part clever field guide, The Hundred Dresses will ensure that no woman (or man) ever underestimates the power of the dress.
Visit Erin McKean's "A Dress A Day" blog.

The Page 69 Test: McKean's That's Amore.

Writers Read: Erin McKean (June 2007).

Saturday, June 8, 2013

"Painted Hands"

New from Thomas Dunne Books: Painted Hands: A Novel by Jennifer Zobair.

About the book, from the publisher:

Muslim bad girl Zainab Mir has just landed a job working for a post-feminist, Republican Senate candidate. Her best friend Amra Abbas is about to make partner at a top Boston law firm. Together they’ve thwarted proposal-slinging aunties, cultural expectations, and the occasional bigot to succeed in their careers. What they didn’t count on? Unlikely men and geopolitical firestorms.

When a handsome childhood friend reappears, Amra makes choices that Zainab considers so 1950s—choices that involve the perfect Banarasi silk dress and a four-bedroom house in the suburbs. After hiding her long work hours during their courtship, Amra struggles to balance her demanding job and her unexpectedly traditional new husband.

Zainab has her own problems. She generates controversy in the Muslim community with a suggestive magazine spread and friendship with a gay reporter. Her rising profile also inflames neocons like Chase Holland, the talk radio host who attacks her religion publicly but privately falls for her hard. When the political fallout from a terrorist attempt jeopardizes Zainab's job and protests surrounding a woman-led Muslim prayer service lead to violence, Amra and Zainab must decide what they’re willing to risk for their principles, their friendship, and love.

Jennifer Zobair's Painted Hands is The Namesake meets Sex and the City, an engaging and provocative debut novel about friendship and the love lives of American Muslim women.
Visit Jennifer Zobair's website.

"The Society for Useful Knowledge"

New from Bloomsbury USA: The Society for Useful Knowledge: How Benjamin Franklin and Friends Brought the Enlightenment to America by Jonathan Lyons.

About the book, from the publisher:

With the "first Drudgery" of settling the American colonies now well and truly past, Benjamin Franklin announced in 1743, it was high time that the colonists set about improving the lot of humankind through collaborative inquiry. From Franklin's idea emerged the American Philosophical Society, an association hosted in Philadelphia and dedicated to the harnessing of man's intellectual and creative powers for the common good. The animus behind the Society was and is a disarmingly simple one-that the value of knowledge is directly proportional to its utility. This straightforward idea has left a profound mark on American society and culture and on the very idea of America itself-and through America, on the world as a whole.

From celebrated historian of knowledge Jonathan Lyons comes The Society for Useful Knowledge, telling the story of America's coming-of-age through its historic love affair with practical invention, applied science, and self-reliance. Lyons illustrates how a social movement in support of useful knowledge is key to understanding the flow of American history and the development of our society and culture from colonial times to our digital present.
Visit Jonathan Lyons's website and blog.

The Page 99 Test: Islam Through Western Eyes.

Writers Read: Jonathan Lyons.

Friday, June 7, 2013

"The Attacking Ocean"

New from Bloomsbury USA: The Attacking Ocean: The Past, Present, and Future of Rising Sea Levels by Brian Fagan.

About the book, from the publisher:

The past fifteen thousand years--the entire span of human civilization--have witnessed dramatic sea level changes, which began with rapid global warming at the end of the Ice Age, when sea levels were more than 700 feet below modern levels. Over the next eleven millennia, the oceans climbed in fits and starts. These rapid changes had little effect on those humans who experienced them, partly because there were so few people on earth, and also because they were able to adjust readily to new coastlines.

Global sea levels stabilized about six thousand years ago except for local adjustments that caused often quite significant changes to places like the Nile Delta. So the curve of inexorably rising seas flattened out as urban civilizations developed in Egypt, Mesopotamia, and South Asia. The earth's population boomed, quintupling from the time of Christ to the Industrial Revolution. The threat from the oceans increased with our crowding along shores to live, fish, and trade.

Since 1860, the world has warmed significantly and the ocean's climb has speeded. The sea level changes are cumulative and gradual; no one knows when they will end. The Attacking Ocean, from celebrated author Brian Fagan, tells a tale of the rising complexity of the relationship between humans and the sea at their doorsteps, a complexity created not by the oceans, which have changed but little. What has changed is us, and the number of us on earth.
Learn more about the author and his work at Brian Fagan's website.

The Page 99 Test: Fagan's The Great Warming.

"You Look Different in Real Life"

New from HarperTeen: You Look Different in Real Life by Jennifer Castle.

About the book, from the publisher:

For the rest of the world, the movies are entertainment. For Justine, they're real life.

The premise was simple: five kids, just living their lives. There'd be a new movie about them every five years, starting in kindergarten. But no one could have predicted what the cameras would capture. And no one could have predicted that Justine would be the star.

Now sixteen, Justine doesn't feel like a star anymore. In fact, when she hears the crew has gotten the green light to film Five at Sixteen, all she feels is dread. The kids who shared the same table in kindergarten have become teenagers who hardly know one another. And Justine, who was so funny and edgy in the first two movies, feels like a disappointment.

But these teens have a bond that goes deeper than what's on film. They've all shared the painful details of their lives with countless viewers. They all know how it feels to have fans as well as friends. So when this latest movie gives them the chance to reunite, Justine and her costars are going to take it. Because sometimes, the only way to see yourself is through someone else's eyes.

Smart, fresh, and frequently funny, You Look Different in Real Life is a piercing novel about life in an age where the lines between what's personal and what's public aren't always clear.
Visit Jennifer Castle's website and blog.