Friday, July 10, 2020

"The Extraordinaries"

New from Tor Teen: The Extraordinaries by TJ Klune.

About the book, from the publisher:

Some people are extraordinary. Some are just extra. TJ Klune's YA debut, The Extraordinaries, is a queer coming-of-age story about a fanboy with ADHD and the heroes he loves.

Nick Bell? Not extraordinary. But being the most popular fanfiction writer in the Extraordinaries fandom is a superpower, right?

After a chance encounter with Shadow Star, Nova City’s mightiest hero (and Nick’s biggest crush), Nick sets out to make himself extraordinary. And he’ll do it with or without the reluctant help of Seth Gray, Nick's best friend (and maybe the love of his life).

Rainbow Rowell's Fangirl meets Marissa Meyer's Renegades in TJ Klune's YA debut.
Visit TJ Klune's website.

--Mashal Zeringue

"Of Bears and Ballots"

New from Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill: Of Bears and Ballots: An Alaskan Adventure in Small-Town Politics by Heather Lende.

About the book, from the publisher:

The writer whom the Los Angeles Times calls “part Annie Dillard, part Anne Lamott” now brings us her quirky and compassionate account of holding local office.

Heather Lende was one of the thousands of women inspired to take a more active role in politics during the past few years. Though her entire campaign for assembly member in Haines, Alaska, cost less than $1,000, she won! But tiny, breathtakingly beautiful Haines—a place accessible from the nearest city, Juneau, only by boat or plane—isn’t the sleepy town that it appears to be: from a bitter debate about the expansion of the fishing boat harbor to the matter of how to stop bears from rifling through garbage on Main Street to the recall campaign that targeted three assembly members, including Lende, we witness the nitty-gritty of passing legislation, the lofty ideals of our republic, and how the polarizing national politics of our era play out in one small town.

With an entertaining cast of offbeat but relatable characters, Of Bears and Ballots is an inspirational tale about what living in a community really means, and what we owe one another.
Visit Heather Lende's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

"Marah Chase and the Fountain of Youth"

New from Pegasus Books: Marah Chase and the Fountain of Youth: A Novel by Jay Stringer.

About the book, from the publisher:

Adventurer Marah Chase can’t resist one last globe-trotting quest to rescue a friend and discover a legendary locale.

Marah Chase has everything she wanted. Her academic career is back on track, she’s moved into a Manhattan apartment, and a dream job is waiting at the American Museum of Natural History. So why can’t she seem to stop slipping into her old ways, traveling the world in search of lost relics and buried treasure?

Back out in the field, Chase finds the lost Ark of the Covenant, a discovery that could trigger a holy war, as religions and nations argue over ownership of the sacred item. The Ark also brings Chase into conflict with another legendary relic runner, August Nash, a clash the entire underground smuggling community has been waiting for, and not one that will end anytime soon.

Upon returning home, Chase is hired by US soda billionaire Lauren Stanford to find the Fountain of Youth. At first, Chase dismisses this idea. But then Stanford tells her that an old friend found some information on the Fountain’s location and is now missing. Chase agrees to take the job—but only to find her friend—and enlists allies along the way on a trail from New York to London, and then on to Glasgow. Behind the myth, they find, lies a much older secret, and now they’re in a race to find the Fountain ahead of Nash and his nefarious cohorts. Whoever gets there first will have control over the future of humanity.

Marah Chase and the Fountain of Youth is a tense, exciting, and epic adventure novel, spanning three continents and broadening the world of the Marah Chase series, placing Chase in the unique position to confront questions of identity, faith, imperialism, and appropriation.
Visit Jay Stringer's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

Thursday, July 9, 2020

"Universality and Identity Politics"

New from Columbia University Press: Universality and Identity Politics by Todd McGowan.

About the book, from the publisher:

The great political ideas and movements of the modern world were founded on a promise of universal emancipation. But in recent decades, much of the Left has grown suspicious of such aspirations. Critics see the invocation of universality as a form of domination or a way of speaking for others, and have come to favor a politics of particularism—often derided as “identity politics.” Others, both centrists and conservatives, associate universalism with twentieth-century totalitarianism and hold that it is bound to lead to catastrophe.

This book develops a new conception of universality that helps us rethink political thought and action. Todd McGowan argues that universals such as equality and freedom are not imposed on us. They emerge from our shared experience of their absence and our struggle to attain them. McGowan reconsiders the history of Nazism and Stalinism and reclaims the universalism of movements fighting racism, sexism, and homophobia. He demonstrates that the divide between Right and Left comes down to particularity versus universality. Despite the accusation of identity politics directed against leftists, every emancipatory political project is fundamentally a universal one—and the real proponents of identity politics are the right wing. Through a wide range of examples in contemporary politics, film, and history, Universality and Identity Politics offers an antidote to the impasses of identity and an inspiring vision of twenty-first-century collective struggle.
The Page 99 Test: Capitalism and Desire.

--Marshal Zeringue

"With or Without You"

Coming soon from Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill: With or Without You: A Novel by Caroline Leavitt.

About the book, from the publisher:

New York Times bestselling author Caroline Leavitt writes novels that expertly explore the struggles and conflicts that people face in their search for happiness. For the characters in With or Without You, it seems at first that such happiness can come only at someone else’s expense. Stella is a nurse who has long suppressed her own needs and desires to nurture the dreams of her partner, Simon, the bass player for a rock band that has started to lose its edge. But when Stella gets unexpectedly ill and falls into a coma just as Simon is preparing to fly with his band to Los Angeles for a gig that could revive his career, Simon must learn the meaning of sacrifice, while Stella’s best friend, Libby, a doctor who treats Stella, must also make a difficult choice as the coma wears on.

When Stella at last awakes from her two-month sleep, she emerges into a striking new reality where Simon and Libby have formed an intense bond, and where she discovers that she has acquired a startling artistic talent of her own: the ability to draw portraits of people in which she captures their innermost feelings and desires. Stella’s whole identity, but also her role in her relationships, has been scrambled, and she has the chance to form a new life, one she hadn’t even realized she wanted.

A story of love, loyalty, loss, and resilience, With or Without You is a page-turner that asks the question, What do we owe the other people in our lives, and when does the cost become too great?
Learn more about the book and author at Caroline Leavitt's website and blog.

The Page 69 Test: Pictures of You.

My Book, the Movie: Pictures of You.

The Page 69 Test: Is This Tomorrow.

My Book, The Movie: Is This Tomorrow.

My Book, The Movie: Cruel Beautiful World.

The Page 69 Test: Cruel Beautiful World.

Writers Read: Caroline Leavitt (October 2016).

--Marshal Zeringue

"Trouble the Saints"

New from Tor Books: Trouble the Saints: A Novel by Alaya Dawn Johnson.

About the book, from the publisher:

The dangerous magic of The Night Circus meets the powerful historical exploration of The Underground Railroad in Alaya Dawn Johnson's timely and unsettling novel, set against the darkly glamorous backdrop of New York City, where an assassin falls in love and tries to change her fate at the dawn of World War II.

Amid the whir of city life, a young woman from Harlem is drawn into the glittering underworld of Manhattan, where she’s hired to use her knives to strike fear among its most dangerous denizens.

Ten years later, Phyllis LeBlanc has given up everything—not just her own past, and Dev, the man she loved, but even her own dreams.

Still, the ghosts from her past are always by her side—and history has appeared on her doorstep to threaten the people she keeps in her heart. And so Phyllis will have to make a harrowing choice, before it’s too late—is there ever enough blood in the world to wash clean generations of injustice?

Trouble the Saints is a dazzling, daring novel—a magical love story, a compelling exposure of racial fault lines—and an altogether brilliant and deeply American saga.
Visit Alaya Dawn Johnson's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

Wednesday, July 8, 2020

"He Started It"

New from Berkley: He Started It by Samantha Downing.

About the book, from the publisher:

From the twisted mind behind mega hit My Lovely Wife comes the story of a family—not unlike your own—just with a few more violent tendencies thrown in….

Beth, Portia, and Eddie Morgan haven’t all been together in years. And for very good reasons—we’ll get to those later. But when their wealthy grandfather dies and leaves a cryptic final message in his wake, the siblings and their respective partners must come together for a cross-country road trip to fulfill his final wish and—more importantly—secure their inheritance.

But time with your family can be tough. It is for everyone.

It’s even harder when you’re all keeping secrets and trying to forget a memory, a missing person, an act of revenge, the man in the black truck who won’t stop following your car—and especially when at least one of you is a killer and there’s a body in the trunk. Just to name a few reasons.

But money is a powerful motivator. It is for everyone.
Visit Samantha Downing's website.

The Page 69 Test: My Lovely Wife.

Writers Read: Samantha Downing (March 2019).

--Marshal Zeringue

"The Indies of the Setting Sun"

New from the University of Chicago Press: The Indies of the Setting Sun: How Early Modern Spain Mapped the Far East as the Transpacific West by Ricardo Padrón.

About the book, from the publisher:

Narratives of Europe’s sixteenth-century westward expansion often tell of how the Americas came to be known as a distinct land mass, a continent separate from Asia and uniquely positioned as new ground ripe for transatlantic colonialism. But this geographic vision of the Americas was not shared by all Europeans. While some imperialists imagined North and Central America as a new and undiscovered land, the Spanish pushed to define the New World as part of a larger and eminently flexible geography that they called las Indias, and that by right, belonged to the Crown of Castile and León. Las Indias included all of the New World as well as East and Southeast Asia, although Spain’s understanding of the relationship between the two areas changed as the realities of the Pacific Rim came into sharper focus. At first, the Spanish insisted that North and Central America were an extension of the continent of Asia. Eventually, they came to understand East and Southeast Asia as a transpacific extension of their empire in America called las Indias del poniente, or the Indies of the Setting Sun.

The Indies of the Setting Sun charts the Spanish vision of a transpacific imperial expanse, beginning with Balboa’s discovery of the South Sea and ending almost one hundred years later with Spain’s final push for control of the Pacific. Padrón traces a series of attempts—both cartographic and discursive—to map the space from Mexico to Malacca, revealing the geopolitical imaginations at play in the quest for control of the New World and Asia.
--Marshal Zeringue

"A Dangerous Breed"

New from William Morrow: A Dangerous Breed: A Novel by Glen Erik Hamilton.

About the book, from the publisher:

Van Shaw’s past and present collide when an ingenious blackmailer pushes him to the brink in this electrifying fifth novel in Glen Erik Hamilton’s gritty and emotionally powerful thriller series.

An invitation addressed to his long-dead mother sparks Van Shaw’s curiosity about the woman he barely knew. As he digs into young Moira Shaw's past, he uncovers startling details about her life, including her relationship to a boy named Sean Burke—a boy Moira may have been seeing when she became pregnant. Could this Burke be the biological father who abandoned Van before he was born? Although Van knows all too well that some doors shouldn’t be opened, he decides to investigate the man—only to discover that Burke has an even darker family history than Van's own.

But Van’s got more immediate problems. His friend Hollis is in a jam, and helping him out accidentally steers Van into the path of a master extortionist named Bilal Nath. Nath demands that the talented thief mastermind a daring heist targeting a Seattle biotechnology firm, or the blackmailer will destroy the lives of people Van loves. Will Van be forced to steal a viral weapon with the potential to kill thousands?

With Bilal Nath coercing him into a possible act of domestic terrorism, Van turns to his formidable crew of lawbreaking friends—including Hollis, Big Will Willard, and Willard's sly and seductive niece Elana—for help. Yet even this team may not be enough. To outwit a brilliant sociopath, Van might just need a cold-blooded killer . . . a criminal whose blood may run through his own veins.
Visit Glen Erik Hamilton's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

Tuesday, July 7, 2020

"Survival of the Friendliest"

New from Random House: Survival of the Friendliest: Understanding Our Origins and Rediscovering Our Common Humanity by Brian Hare and Vanessa Woods.

About the book, from the publisher:

A powerful new theory of human nature suggests that our secret to success as a species is our unique friendliness

For most of the approximately 300,000 years that Homo sapiens have existed, we have shared the planet with at least four other types of humans. All of these were smart, strong, and inventive. But around 50,000 years ago, Homo sapiens made a cognitive leap that gave us an edge over other species. What happened?

Since Charles Darwin wrote about “evolutionary fitness,” the idea of fitness has been confused with physical strength, tactical brilliance, and aggression. In fact, what made us evolutionarily fit was a remarkable kind of friendliness, a virtuosic ability to coordinate and communicate with others that allowed us to achieve all the cultural and technical marvels in human history. Advancing what they call the “self-domestication theory,” Brian Hare, professor in the department of evolutionary anthropology and the Center for Cognitive Neuroscience at Duke University and his wife, Vanessa Woods, a research scientist and award-winning journalist, shed light on the mysterious leap in human cognition that allowed Homo sapiens to thrive.

But this gift for friendliness came at a cost. Just as a mother bear is most dangerous around her cubs, we are at our most dangerous when someone we love is threatened by an “outsider.” The threatening outsider is demoted to sub-human, fair game for our worst instincts. Hare’s groundbreaking research, developed in close coordination with Richard Wrangham and Michael Tomasello, giants in the field of cognitive evolution, reveals that the same traits that make us the most tolerant species on the planet also make us the cruelest.

Survival of the Friendliest offers us a new way to look at our cultural as well as cognitive evolution and sends a clear message: In order to survive and even to flourish, we need to expand our definition of who belongs.
Visit Brian Hare's website and Vanessa Woods's website.

The Page 99 Test: The Genius of Dogs.

--Marshal Zeringue

"Danny Constantino's First (and Maybe Last?) Date"

New from Dial Books: Danny Constantino's First (and Maybe Last?) Date by Paul Acampora.

About the book, from the publisher:

Between going out with his celebrity crush and his mom’s campaign to be the next town mayor, Danny’s got a lot to learn about life in the spotlight.

When Danny Constantino asks his old-friend-turned-Hollywood-movie-star, Natalie Flores Griffin, to his local school dance and homecoming parade, she surprises him . . . by saying yes! Unfortunately, now everyone in Cuper Cove has something to say about Danny’s love life–especially since Natalie is the hometown hero. Throw in herds of TV reporters and NFG groupies, his mom using Natalie’s arrival for free publicity, and a pep rally gone horribly, horribly awry, and Danny’s left absolutely clueless in this new world of crushes and becoming (kind of) famous.
Visit Paul Acampora's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

Monday, July 6, 2020

"Demagogue"

New from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt: Demagogue: The Life and Long Shadow of Senator Joe McCarthy by Larry Tye.

About the book, from the publisher:

The definitive biography of the most dangerous demagogue in American history, based on first-ever review of his personal and professional papers, medical and military records, and recently unsealed transcripts of his closed-door Congressional hearings

In the long history of American demagogues, from Huey Long to Donald Trump, never has one man caused so much damage in such a short time as Senator Joseph McCarthy. We still use “McCarthyism” to stand for outrageous charges of guilt by association, a weapon of polarizing slander. From 1950 to 1954, McCarthy destroyed many careers and even entire lives, whipping the nation into a frenzy of paranoia, accusation, loyalty oaths, and terror. When the public finally turned on him, he came crashing down, dying of alcoholism in 1957. Only now, through bestselling author Larry Tye’s exclusive look at the senator’s records, can the full story be told.

Demagogue is a masterful portrait of a human being capable of immense evil, yet beguiling charm. McCarthy was a tireless worker and a genuine war hero. His ambitions knew few limits. Neither did his socializing, his drinking, nor his gambling. When he finally made it to the Senate, he flailed around in search of an agenda and angered many with his sharp elbows and lack of integrity. Finally, after three years, he hit upon anti-communism. By recklessly charging treason against everyone from George Marshall to much of the State Department, he became the most influential and controversial man in America. His chaotic, meteoric rise is a gripping and terrifying object lesson for us all. Yet his equally sudden fall from fame offers reason for hope that, given the rope, most American demagogues eventually hang themselves.
Visit Larry Tye's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

"Dark August"

New from Harper Paperbacks: Dark August: A Novel by Katie Tallo.

About the book, from the publisher:

An electrifying, page-turning debut about a young woman haunted by her tragic past, who returns to her hometown and discovers that there might be more to her police detective mother’s death—and last case—than she ever could have imagined.

Augusta (Gus) Monet is living an aimless existence with her grifter boyfriend when she learns that her great grandmother—her last living relative—has just died. Ditching her boyfriend, Gus returns to the home she left as a young girl. Her inheritance turns out to be a dilapidated house and an old dog named Levi. While combing through her great grandmother’s possessions, Gus stumbles across an old trunk filled with long-lost childhood belongings. But that’s not all the trunk contains. She also discovers cold case files that belonged to her mother, a disgraced police detective who died in a car accident when Gus was eight. Gus remembers her mother obsessing over these very same documents and photographs, especially a Polaroid of a young ballerina.

When Gus spots a front-page news story about the unearthing of a body linked to one of the cold case files from her childhood trunk, she can’t resist following her mother’s clues. As she digs deeper, determined to finish her mother’s investigation, her search leads her to a deserted ghost town, which was left abandoned when the residents fled after a horrific fire. As Gus’ obsession with the case grows, she inadvertently stirs up the evils of the past, putting her life in danger. But Gus is undeterred and is committed to uncovering long-buried secrets, including the secrets surrounding a missing geology student, the young ballerina in the Polaroid, a prominent family’s devastating legacy, and a toxic blast that blew an entire town off the map.

But is Gus ready to learn the truths that culminated on one terrible August night, more than a decade earlier, when lives were taken, and secrets were presumed buried forever…?

Dark August introduces a bold new voice and will leave readers guessing until the final startling conclusion.
Visit Katie Tallo's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

"British Literature and Culture in Second World Wartime"

New from Oxford University Press: British Literature and Culture in Second World Wartime: For the Duration by Beryl Pong.

About the book, from the publisher:

British Literature and Culture in Second World Wartime excavates British late modernism's relationship to war in terms of chronophobia: a joint fear of the past and future. As a wartime between, but distinct from, those of the First World War and the Cold War, Second World wartime involves an anxiety that is both repetition and imaginary: both a dread of past violence unleashed anew, and that of a future violence still ungraspable. Identifying a constellation of temporalities and affects under three tropes--time capsules, time zones, and ruins--this volume contends that Second World wartime is a pivotal moment when wartime surpassed the boundaries of a specific state of emergency, becoming first routine and then open-ended.

It offers a synoptic, wide-ranging look at writers on the home front, including Henry Green, Elizabeth Bowen, Virginia Woolf, and Rose Macaulay, through a variety of genres, such as life-writing, the novel, and the short story. It also considers an array of cultural and archival material from photographers such as Cecil Beaton, filmmakers such as Charles Crichton, and artists such as John Minton. It shows how figures harnessed or exploited their media's temporal properties to formally register the distinctiveness of this wartime through a complex feedback between anticipation and retrospection, oftentimes fashioning the war as a memory, even while it was taking place. While offering a strong foundation for new readers of the mid-century, the book's overall theoretical focus on chronophobia will be an important intervention for those already working in the field.
Visit Beryl Pong's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

Sunday, July 5, 2020

"The Nesting Dolls"

New from Harper: The Nesting Dolls: A Novel by Alina Adams.

About the book, from the publisher:

Spanning nearly a century, from 1930s Siberia to contemporary Brighton Beach, a page turning, epic family saga centering on three generations of women in one Russian Jewish family—each striving to break free of fate and history, each yearning for love and personal fulfillment—and how the consequences of their choices ripple through time.

Odessa, 1931. Marrying the handsome, wealthy Edward Gordon, Daria—born Dvora Kaganovitch—has fulfilled her mother’s dreams. But a woman’s plans are no match for the crushing power of Stalin’s repressive Soviet state. To survive, Daria is forced to rely on the kindness of a man who takes pride in his own coarseness.

Odessa, 1970. Brilliant young Natasha Crystal is determined to study mathematics. But the Soviets do not allow Jewish students—even those as brilliant as Natasha—to attend an institute as prestigious as Odessa University. With her hopes for the future dashed, Natasha must find a new purpose—one that leads her into the path of a dangerous young man.

Brighton Beach, 2019. Zoe Venakovsky, known to her family as Zoya, has worked hard to leave the suffocating streets and small minds of Brighton Beach behind her—only to find that what she’s tried to outrun might just hold her true happiness.

Moving from a Siberian gulag to the underground world of Soviet refuseniks to oceanside Brooklyn, The Nesting Dolls is a heartbreaking yet ultimately redemptive story of circumstance, choice, and consequence—and three dynamic unforgettable women, all who will face hardships that force them to compromise their dreams as they fight to fulfill their destinies.
Visit Alina Adams's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

"The King of Confidence"

New from Little, Brown: The King of Confidence: A Tale of Utopian Dreamers, Frontier Schemers, True Believers, False Prophets, and the Murder of an American Monarch by Miles Harvey.

About the book, from the publisher:

In the summer of 1843, James Strang, a charismatic young lawyer and avowed atheist, vanished from a rural town in New York. Months later he reappeared on the Midwestern frontier and converted to a burgeoning religious movement known as Mormonism. In the wake of the murder of the sect’s leader, Joseph Smith, Strang unveiled a letter purportedly from the prophet naming him successor, and persuaded hundreds of fellow converts to follow him to an island in Lake Michigan, where he declared himself a divine king.

From this stronghold he controlled a fourth of the state of Michigan, establishing a pirate colony where he practiced plural marriage and perpetrated thefts, corruption, and frauds of all kinds. Eventually, having run afoul of powerful enemies, including the American president, Strang was assassinated, an event that was frontpage news across the country.

The King of Confidence tells this fascinating but largely forgotten story. Centering his narrative on this charlatan’s turbulent twelve years in power, Miles Harvey gets to the root of a timeless American original: the Confidence Man. Full of adventure, bad behavior, and insight into a crucial period of antebellum history, The King of Confidence brings us a compulsively readable account of one of the country’s boldest con men and the boisterous era that allowed him to thrive.
Visit Miles Harvey's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

Saturday, July 4, 2020

"Fire on the Island"

New from Arcade Publishing: Fire on the Island: A Romantic Thriller by Timothy Jay Smith.

About the book, from the publisher:

FIRE ON THE ISLAND is a playful, romantic thriller set in contemporary Greece, with a gay Greek-American FBI agent, who is undercover on the island to investigate a series of mysterious fires. Set against the very real refugee crisis on the beautiful, sun-drenched Greek islands, this novel paints a loving portrait of a community in crisis. As the island residents grapple with declining tourism, poverty, refugees, family feuds, and a perilously damaged church, an arsonist invades their midst.

Nick Damigos, the FBI agent, arrives on the island just in time to witness the latest fire and save a beloved truffle-sniffing dog. Hailed as a hero and embraced by the community, Nick finds himself drawn to Takis, a young bartender who becomes his primary suspect, which is a problem because they’re having an affair. Theirs is not the only complicated romance in the community and Takis isn’t the only suspicious character on the island. The priest is an art forger, a young Albanian waiter harbors a secret, the captain of the coast guard station seems to have his own agenda, and the village itself hides a violent history. Nick has to unravel the truth in time to prevent catastrophe, as he comes to terms with his own past trauma. In saving the village, he will go a long way toward saving himself.

A long time devotee of the Greek islands, Smith paints the setting with gorgeous color and empathy, ushering in a new romantic thriller with the charm of Zorba the Greek while shedding bright light on the very real challenges of life in contemporary Greece.
Visit Timothy Jay Smith's website.

Writers Read: Timothy Jay Smith.

My Book, The Movie: The Fourth Courier.

The Page 69 Test: The Fourth Courier.

--Marshal Zeringue

"The Glare"

New from Little, Brown Books for Young Readers: The Glare by Margot Harrison.

About the book, from the publisher:

After living off the grid for more than a decade, a teenage girl must play a dangerous game — and face the shadows of her past — to save the world from a dangerous dark force.

After ten years of living on an isolated, tech-free ranch with her mother, sixteen-year-old Hedda is going back to the world of the Glare — her word for cell phones, computers, and tablets. Hedda was taught to be afraid of technology, afraid that it would get inside her mind and hurt her. But now she's going to stay with her dad in California, where she was born, and she's finally ready to be normal. She's not going to go "off-kilter," like her mom says she did when she was just a little kid.

Once she arrives, Hedda finally feels like she's in control. She reunites with old friends and connects with her stepmom and half-brother. Never mind the terrifying nightmares and visions that start trickling back — they're not real.

Then Hedda rediscovers the Glare: the real Glare, a first-person shooter game from the dark web that scared her when she was younger. They say if you die thirteen times on level thirteen, you die in real life. But as Hedda starts playing the so-called "death game" — and the game begins spreading among her friends — she realizes the truth behind her nightmares is even more twisted than she could have imagined. And in order to stop the Glare, she'll have to first confront the darkness within herself.
Visit Margot Harrison's website.

The Page 69 Test: The Killer in Me.

Writers Read: Margot Harrison (July 2016).

--Marshal Zeringue

Friday, July 3, 2020

"The Do-Over"

New from Feiwel & Friends: The Do-Over by Jennifer Honeybourn.

About the book, from the publisher:

In The Do-Over, a teenage girl gets the chance to redo her past in this smart and charming YA novel by the author of When Life Gives You Demons, Jennifer Honeybourn.

Emelia has always wanted to fit in with the A crowd. So, when Ben, the hottest guy in school, asks her out, she chooses him over Alistair, her best friend—even after he confesses his feelings to her.

Six months later, Emilia wonders how her life would have been different if she’d chosen Alistair instead. Haunted by her mistake, she finds a magical solution that promises to rectify the past. As a result, everything in her life is different.

Different, but not better.

What happens if her second chance is her only chance to make things right?
Visit Jennifer Honeybourn's website.

My Book, The Movie: Just My Luck.

The Page 69 Test: Just My Luck.

--Marshal Zeringue

"Musical Chairs"

New from Atria/Emily Bestler Books: Musical Chairs: A Novel by Amy Poeppel.

About the book, from the publisher:

Bridget and Will have the kind of relationship that people envy: they’re loving, compatible, and completely devoted to each other. The fact that they’re strictly friends seems to get lost on nearly everyone; after all, they’re as good as married in (almost) every way. For three decades, they’ve nurtured their baby, the Forsyth Trio—a chamber group they created as students with their Juilliard classmate Gavin Glantz. In the intervening years, Gavin has gone on to become one of the classical music world’s reigning stars, while Bridget and Will have learned to embrace the warm reviews and smaller venues that accompany modest success.

Bridget has been dreaming of spending the summer at her well-worn Connecticut country home with her boyfriend Sterling. But her plans are upended when Sterling, dutifully following his ex-wife’s advice, breaks up with her over email and her twin twenty-somethings arrive unannounced, filling her empty nest with their big dogs, dirty laundry, and respective crises.

Bridget has problems of her own: her elderly father announces he’s getting married, and the Forsyth Trio is once again missing its violinist. She concocts a plan to host her dad’s wedding on her ramshackle property, while putting the Forsyth Trio back into the spotlight. But to catch the attention of the music world, she and Will place their bets on luring back Gavin, whom they’ve both avoided ever since their stormy parting.

With her trademark humor, pitch-perfect voice, and sly perspective on the human heart, Amy Poeppel crafts a love letter to modern family life with all of its discord and harmony. In the tradition of novels by Maria Semple and Stephen McCauley, Musical Chairs is an irresistibly romantic story of role reversals, reinvention, and sweet synchronicity.
Visit Amy Poeppel's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

"You're Next"

New from Jimmy Patterson Books: You're Next by Kylie Schachte.

About the book, from the publisher:

When a girl with a troubled history of finding dead bodies investigates the murder of her ex, she uncovers a plot to put herself — and everyone she loves — on the list of who’s next.

Flora Calhoun has a reputation for sticking her nose where it doesn’t belong. After stumbling upon a classmate’s body years ago, the trauma of that discovery and the police’s failure to find the killer has haunted her ever since. One night, she gets a midnight text from Ava McQueen, the beautiful girl who had ignited Flora’s heart last summer, then never spoke to her again.

Just in time to witness Ava’s death from a gunshot wound, Flora is set on a path of rage and vengeance for all the dead girls whose killer is never found. Her tunnel-visioned sleuthing leads to valuable clues about a shocking conspiracy involving her school and beyond, but also earns her sinister threats from the murderer. She has a choice: give up the hunt for answers, or keep digging and risk her loved ones’ lives. Either way, Flora will regret the consequences. Who’s next on the killer’s list?
Visit Kylie Schachte's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

Thursday, July 2, 2020

"Sisters in Hate"

New from Little, Brown: Sisters in Hate: American Women on the Front Lines of White Nationalism by Seyward Darby.

About the book, from the publisher:

Journalist Seyward Darby’s “masterfully reported and incisive” (Nell Irvin Painter) exposé pulls back the curtain on modern racial and political extremism in America telling the “eye-opening and unforgettable” (Ibram X. Kendi) account of three women immersed in the white nationalist movement.

After the election of Donald J. Trump, journalist Seyward Darby went looking for the women of the so-called “alt-right” — really just white nationalism with a new label. The mainstream media depicted the alt-right as a bastion of angry white men, but was it? As women headlined resistance to the Trump administration’s bigotry and sexism, most notably at the Women’s Marches, Darby wanted to know why others were joining a movement espousing racism and anti-feminism. Who were these women, and what did their activism reveal about America’s past, present, and future?

Darby researched dozens of women across the country before settling on three — Corinna Olsen, Ayla Stewart, and Lana Lokteff. Each was born in 1979, and became a white nationalist in the post-9/11 era. Their respective stories of radicalization upend much of what we assume about women, politics, and political extremism.

Corinna, a professional embalmer who was once a body builder, found community in white nationalism before it was the alt-right, while she was grieving the death of her brother and the end of hermarriage. For Corinna, hate was more than just personal animus — it could also bring people together. Eventually, she decided to leave the movement and served as an informant for the FBI.

Ayla, a devoutly Christian mother of six, underwent a personal transformation from self-professed feminist to far-right online personality. Her identification with the burgeoning “tradwife” movement reveals how white nationalism traffics in society’s preferred, retrograde ways of seeing women.

Lana, who runs a right-wing media company with her husband, enjoys greater fame and notoriety than many of her sisters in hate. Her work disseminating and monetizing far-right dogma is a testament to the power of disinformation.

With acute psychological insight and eye-opening reporting, Darby steps inside the contemporary hate movement and draws connections to precursors like the Ku Klux Klan. Far more than mere helpmeets, women like Corinna, Ayla, and Lana have been sustaining features of white nationalism. Sisters in Hate shows how the work women do to normalize and propagate racist extremism has consequences well beyond the hate movement.
Visit Seyward Darby's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

"Really Truly"

New from Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers: Really Truly by Heather Vogel Frederick.

About the book, from the publisher:

The Pumpkin Falls Private Eyes grapple with pirates and mermaids in the third cozy mystery of the Edgar Award–nominated middle grade series from the author of the beloved Mother-Daughter Book Club books.

Truly Lovejoy is excited for the perfect summer in Pumpkin Falls, New Hampshire: swim practice outside, working at the bookstore, one-on-one time with her mom, and best of all, time with the dreamy RJ Calhoun who may just like Truly back. But the idyllic falls apart when she’s sent off to mermaid academy—sparkly tail and all.

Luckily, a mystery is never too far behind the Pumpkin Falls Private Eyes, and synchronized swimming turns into a hunt for a sunken ship and an investigation of the founding of Pumpkin Falls…which may have involved more pirates than originally thought.

And as the Pumpkin Falls Private Eyes get closer to the heart of the mystery and Truly gets closer to her mermaid debut, she may just learn to come out of her shell.
Visit Heather Vogel Frederick's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

"Opium and Absinthe"

New from Lake Union: Opium and Absinthe: A Novel by Lydia Kang.

About the book, from the publisher:

From the bestselling author of A Beautiful Poison comes another spellbinding historical novel full of intrigue, occult mystery, and unexpected twists.

New York City, 1899. Tillie Pembroke’s sister lies dead, her body drained of blood and with two puncture wounds on her neck. Bram Stoker’s new novel, Dracula, has just been published, and Tillie’s imagination leaps to the impossible: the murderer is a vampire. But it can’t be—can it?

A ravenous reader and researcher, Tillie has something of an addiction to truth, and she won’t rest until she unravels the mystery of her sister’s death. Unfortunately, Tillie’s addicted to more than just truth; to ease the pain from a recent injury, she’s taking more and more laudanum…and some in her immediate circle are happy to keep her well supplied.

Tillie can’t bring herself to believe vampires exist. But with the hysteria surrounding her sister’s death, the continued vampiric slayings, and the opium swirling through her body, it’s becoming increasingly difficult for a girl who relies on facts and figures to know what’s real—or whether she can trust those closest to her.
Learn more about the book and author at Lydia Kang's website, blog, Facebook page and Twitter perch.

The Page 69 Test: Control.

The Page 69 Test: Catalyst.

The Page 69 Test: A Beautiful Poison.

Writers Read: Lydia Kang (October 2017).

--Marshal Zeringue

Wednesday, July 1, 2020

"The All-Night Sun"

New from Random House: The All-Night Sun: A Novel by Diane Zinna.

About the book, from the publisher:

Lauren Cress teaches writing at a small college outside of Washington, DC. In the classroom, she is poised, smart, and kind, well liked by her students and colleagues. But in her personal life, Lauren is troubled and isolated, still grappling with the sudden death of her parents ten years earlier. She seems to exist at a remove from everyone around her until a new student joins her class: charming, magnetic Siri, who appears to be everything Lauren wishes she could be. They fall headlong into an all-consuming friendship that makes Lauren feel as though she is reclaiming her lost adolescence.

When Siri invites her on a trip home to Sweden for the summer, Lauren impulsively accepts, intrigued by how Siri describes it: green, fresh, and new, everything just thawing out. But once there, Lauren finds herself drawn to Siri’s enigmatic, brooding brother, Magnus. Siri is resentful, and Lauren starts to see a new side of her friend: selfish, reckless, self-destructive, even cruel. On their last night together, Lauren accompanies Siri and her friends on a seaside camping trip to celebrate Midsommar’s Eve, a night when no one sleeps, boundaries blur, and under the light of the unsetting sun, things take a dark turn.

Ultimately, Lauren must acknowledge the truth of what happened with Siri and come to terms with her own tragic past in this gorgeously written, deeply felt debut about the transformative relationships that often come to us when things feel darkest.
Visit Diane Zinna's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

Tuesday, June 30, 2020

"Ghost Wood Song"

New from HarperTeen: Ghost Wood Song by Erica Waters.

About the book, from the publisher:

If I could have a fiddle made of Daddy’s bones, I’d play it. I’d learn all the secrets he kept.

Shady Grove inherited her father’s ability to call ghosts from the grave with his fiddle, but she also knows the fiddle’s tunes bring nothing but trouble and darkness.

But when her brother is accused of murder, she can’t let the dead keep their secrets.

In order to clear his name, she’s going to have to make those ghosts sing.

Family secrets, a gorgeously resonant LGBTQ love triangle, and just the right amount of creepiness make this young adult debut a haunting and hopeful story about facing everything that haunts us in the dark.
Visit Erica Waters's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

"Wonderland"

New from Little, Brown and Company: Wonderland by Zoje Stage.

About the book, from the publisher:

One mother's love may be all that stands between her family, an enigmatic presence—and madness.

After years of city life, Orla and Shaw Bennett are ready for the quiet of New York's Adirondack mountains—or at least, they think they are. Settling into the perfect farmhouse with their two children, they are both charmed and unsettled by the expanse of their land, the privacy of their individual bedrooms, and the isolation of life a mile from any neighbor.

But none of the Bennetts could expect what lies waiting in the woods, where secrets run dark and deep. When something begins to call to the family-from under the earth, beneath the trees, and within their minds-Orla realizes she might be the only one who can save them ... if she can find out what this force wants before it's too late.

With an ending inescapable and deeply satisfying, Wonderland brilliantly blends horror and suspense to probe the boundaries of family, loyalty, love, and the natural world.
Visit Zoje Stage's website.

Writers Read: Zoje Stage.

--Marshal Zeringue

"Out of Time"

New from Dutton: Out of Time: A Novel by David Klass.

About the book, from the publisher:

In this explosive thriller, a fiendishly clever serial bomber and self-styled “eco-terrorist” hits targets across America–and a conflicted young FBI agent may be the only person possessing the unique skills needed to catch him.

A massive FBI manhunt is underway for an elusive and terrifyingly adept serial bomber. He’s just struck his sixth target, Idaho’s Boon Dam, killing a dozen innocent people. But the bomber, who the press has dubbed “Green Man,” insists these drastic acts of violence–each one carefully selected to destroy a target that threatens the environment–are necessary to draw the world’s attention to the climate-change emergency.

The FBI has no real leads. It’s as if Green Man can predict every step of their investigation, skillfully evading all their standard tactics.

Until young agent Tom Smith approaches the task-force leader with an unexpected insight. Tom, a computer programmer by training, may be the only person with the unique skill set needed to catch Green Man before he strikes again….
--Marshal Zeringue

Monday, June 29, 2020

"Blacktop Wasteland"

New from Flatiron Books: Blacktop Wasteland: A Novel by S. A. Cosby.

About the book, from the publisher:

Beauregard “Bug” Montage is an honest mechanic, a loving husband, and a hard-working dad. Bug knows there’s no future in the man he used to be: known from the hills of North Carolina to the beaches of Florida as the best wheelman on the East Coast.

He thought he'd left all that behind him, but as his carefully built new life begins to crumble, he finds himself drawn inexorably back into a world of blood and bullets. When a smooth-talking former associate comes calling with a can't-miss jewelry store heist, Bug feels he has no choice but to get back in the driver's seat. And Bug is at his best where the scent of gasoline mixes with the smell of fear.

Haunted by the ghost of who he used to be and the father who disappeared when he needed him most, Bug must find a way to navigate this blacktop wasteland...or die trying.

Like Ocean’s Eleven meets Drive, with a Southern noir twist, S. A. Cosby’s Blacktop Wasteland is a searing, operatic story of a man pushed to his limits by poverty, race, and his own former life of crime.
Follow S. A. Cosby on Facebook and Twitter.

--Marshal Zeringue

"The Lantern Men"

New from Houghton Mifflin: The Lantern Men by Elly Griffiths.

About the book, from the publisher:

Forensic archaeologist Ruth Galloway changed her life—until a convicted killer tells her that four of his victims were never found, drawing her back to the place she left behind.

Everything has changed for Ruth Galloway. She has a new job, home, and partner, and she is no longer North Norfolk police’s resident forensic archaeologist. That is, until convicted murderer Ivor March offers to make DCI Nelson a deal. Nelson was always sure that March killed more women than he was charged with. Now March confirms this and offers to show Nelson where the other bodies are buried—but only if Ruth will do the digging.

Curious, but wary, Ruth agrees. March tells Ruth that he killed four more women and that their bodies are buried near a village bordering the fens, said to be haunted by the Lantern Men, mysterious figures holding lights that lure travelers to their deaths.

Is Ivor March himself a lantern man, luring Ruth back to Norfolk? What is his plan, and why is she so crucial to it? And are the killings really over?
Learn more about the book and author at Elly Griffiths's website.

The Page 69 Test: The Crossing Places.

My Book, The Movie: The House at Sea’s End.

The Page 69 Test: A Room Full of Bones.

The Page 69 Test: A Dying Fall.

--Marshal Zeringue

"East of Hounslow"

Coming soon from HQ: East of Hounslow (Jay Qasim, Book 1) by Khurrum Rahman.

About the book, from the publisher:

Meet Jay.

Small-time dealer.

Accidental jihadist.

The one man who can save us all?


Javid – call him Jay – is a dope dealer living in West London. He goes to mosque on Friday, and he’s just bought his pride and joy – a BMW. He lives with his mum, and life seems sweet.

But his world is about to turn upside-down. Because MI5 have been watching him, and they think he’s just the man they need for a delicate mission.

One thing’s for sure: now he’s a long way East of Hounslow, Jay’s life will never be the same again.
--Marshal Zeringue

Sunday, June 28, 2020

"Raising a Rare Girl: A Memoir"

New from Penguin Press: Raising a Rare Girl: A Memoir by Heather Lanier.

About the book, from the publisher:

Award-winning writer Heather Lanier’s memoir about raising a child with a rare syndrome, defying the tyranny of normal, and embracing parenthood as a spiritual practice that breaks us open in the best of ways.

Like many women of her generation, Heather Lanier did everything by the book when she was expecting her first child. She ate organic foods, recited affirmations, and drew up a birth plan for an unmedicated labor in the hopes that she could create a SuperBaby, an ultra-healthy human destined for a high-achieving future.

But her daughter Fiona challenged all of Lanier’s preconceptions. Born with an ultra-rare syndrome known as Wolf-Hirschhorn, Fiona received a daunting prognosis: she would experience significant developmental delays and might not reach her second birthday. Not only had Lanier failed to produce a SuperBaby, she now fiercely loved a child that the world would sometimes reject. The diagnosis obliterated Lanier’s perfectionist tendencies, along with her most closely held beliefs about certainty, vulnerability, God, and love.

With tiny bits of mozzarella cheese, a walker rolled to library story time, a talking iPad app, and a whole lot of pop and reggae, mother and daughter spend their days doing whatever it takes to give Fiona nourishment, movement, and language. They also confront society’s attitudes toward disability and the often cruel assumptions made about Fiona’s worth. Lanier realizes the biggest question is not, Will my daughter walk or talk? but, How can I best love my girl, just as she is?

Loving Fiona opens Lanier up to new understandings of what it means to be human, what it takes to be a mother, and above all, the aching joy and wonder that come from embracing the unique life of her rare girl.
Visit Heather Lanier's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

"The Party Upstairs"

New from Penguin Press: The Party Upstairs: A Novel by Lee Conell.

About the book, from the publisher:

An electrifying debut novel that unfolds in the course of a single day inside one genteel New York City apartment building, as tensions between the building’s super and his grown-up daughter spark a crisis that will, by day’s end, change everything.

Ruby has a strange relationship to privilege. She grew up the super’s daughter in the basement of an Upper West Side co-op that gets more gentrified with each passing year. Though not economically privileged herself, her close childhood friendship with Caroline, the daughter of affluent tenants, and the mere fact of living in such a wealthy neighborhood, close to her beloved Natural History Museum, brought her certain advantages, even expectations. Naturally Ruby followed her dreams and took out loans to attend a prestigious small liberal arts college and explore her interest in art. But now, out of school for a while, she is no closer to her dream job, or anything resembling it, and she’s been forced by circumstances to do the last thing she wanted to do: move back in with her parents, back into the basement. And Caroline is throwing one of her parties tonight, in her father’s glorious penthouse apartment, a party Ruby looks forward to and dreads in equal measure.

With a thriller’s narrative control, The Party Upstairs distills worlds of wisdom about families, great expectations, and the hidden violence of class into the gripping, darkly witty story of a single fateful day inside the Manhattan co-op Ruby calls home. Told from the alternating points of view of Ruby and her father, the novel builds from the spark of an early morning argument between them to the ultimate conflagration to which it leads by day’s end. By the time the ashes have cooled, the façade that masks the building’s power structure will have burned away, and no party will be left unscathed.
Visit Lee Conell's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

"The Patient"

New from Houghton Mifflin: The Patient by Jasper DeWitt.

About the book, from the publisher:

The Silent Patient by way of Stephen King: Parker, a young, overconfident psychiatrist new to his job at a mental asylum, miscalculates catastrophically when he undertakes curing a mysterious and profoundly dangerous patient.

In a series of online posts, Parker H., a young psychiatrist, chronicles the harrowing account of his time working at a dreary mental hospital in New England. Through this internet message board, Parker hopes to communicate with the world his effort to cure one bewildering patient.

We learn, as Parker did on his first day at the hospital, of the facility’s most difficult, profoundly dangerous case—a forty-year-old man who was originally admitted to the hospital at age six. This patient has no known diagnosis. His symptoms seem to evolve over time. Every person who has attempted to treat him has been driven to madness or suicide.

Desperate and fearful, the hospital’s directors keep him strictly confined and allow minimal contact with staff for their own safety, convinced that releasing him would unleash catastrophe on the outside world. Parker, brilliant and overconfident, takes it upon himself to discover what ails this mystery patient and finally cure him. But from his first encounter with the mystery patient, things spiral out of control, and, facing a possibility beyond his wildest imaginings, Parker is forced to question everything he thought he knew.

Fans of Sarah Pinborough’s Behind Her Eyes and Paul Tremblay’s The Cabin at the End of the World will be riveted by Jasper DeWitt’s astonishing debut.
Follow Jason DeWitt on Twitter.

--Marshal Zeringue

Saturday, June 27, 2020

"The Bright Lands"

New from Hanover Square Press: The Bright Lands by John Fram.

About the book, from the publisher:

The town of Bentley holds two things dear: its football, and its secrets. But when star quarterback Dylan Whitley goes missing, an unremitting fear grips this remote corner of Texas.

Joel Whitley was shamed out of conservative Bentley ten years ago, and while he’s finally made a life for himself as a gay man in New York, his younger brother’s disappearance soon brings him back to a place he thought he’d escaped for good. Meanwhile, Sheriff’s Deputy Starsha Clark stayed in Bentley; Joel’s return brings back painful memories—not to mention questions—about her own missing brother. And in the high school hallways, Dylan’s friends begin to suspect that their classmates know far more than they’re telling the police. Together, these unlikely allies will stir up secrets their town has long tried to ignore, drawing the attention of dangerous men who will stop at nothing to see that their crimes stay buried.

But no one is quite prepared to face the darkness that’s begun to haunt their nightmares, whispering about a place long thought to be nothing but an urban legend: an empty night, a flicker of light on the horizon—The Bright Lands.

Shocking, twisty and relentlessly suspenseful, John Fram’s debut is a heart-pounding story about old secrets, modern anxieties and the price young men pay for glory.
Visit John Fram's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

"Members Only"

New from Houghton Mifflin: Members Only by Sameer Pandya.

About the book, from the publisher:

First the white members of Raj Bhatt’s posh tennis club call him racist. Then his life falls apart. Along the way, he wonders: where does he, a brown man, belong in America?

Raj Bhatt is often unsure of where he belongs. Having moved to America from Bombay as a child, he knew few Indian kids. Now middle-aged, he lives mostly happily in California, with a job at a university. Still, his white wife seems to fit in better than he does at times, especially at their tennis club, a place he’s cautiously come to love.

But it’s there that, in one week, his life unravels. It begins at a meeting for potential new members: Raj thrills to find an African American couple on the list; he dreams of a more diverse club. But in an effort to connect, he makes a racist joke. The committee turns on him, no matter the years of prejudice he’s put up with. And worse still, he soon finds his job is in jeopardy after a group of students report him as a reverse racist, thanks to his alleged “anti-Western bias.”

Heartfelt, humorous, and hard-hitting, Members Only explores what membership and belonging mean, as Raj navigates the complicated space between black and white America.
Visit Sameer Pandya's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

"Dress Coded"

New from G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers: Dress Coded by Carrie Firestone.

About the book, from the publisher:

In this debut middle-grade girl-power friendship story, an eighth grader starts a podcast to protest the unfair dress code enforcement at her middle school and sparks a rebellion.

Molly Frost is FED UP…

Because Olivia was yelled at for wearing a tank top.

Because Liza got dress coded and Molly didn’t, even though they were wearing the exact same outfit.

Because when Jessica was pulled over by the principal and missed a math quiz, her teacher gave her an F.

Because it’s impossible to find shorts that are longer than her fingertips.

Because girls’ bodies are not a distraction.

Because middle school is hard enough.

And so Molly starts a podcast where girls can tell their stories, and before long, her small rebellion swells into a revolution. Because now the girls are standing up for what’s right, and they’re not backing down.
Visit Carrie Firestone's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

Friday, June 26, 2020

"The Beginning or the End"

From The New Press: The Beginning or the End: How Hollywood―and America―Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb by Greg Mitchell.

About the book, from the publisher:
The shocking and significant story of how the White House and Pentagon scuttled an epic Hollywood production.

Soon after atomic bombs exploded over Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945, MGM set out to make a movie studio chief Louis B. Mayer called “the most important story” he would ever film: a big budget dramatization of the Manhattan Project and the invention and use of the revolutionary new weapon.

Over at Paramount, Hal B. Wallis was ramping up his own film version. His screenwriter: the novelist Ayn Rand, who saw in physicist J. Robert Oppenheimer the model for a character she was sketching for Atlas Shrugged.

Greg Mitchell’s The Beginning or the End chronicles the first efforts of American media and culture to process the Atomic Age. A movie that began as a cautionary tale inspired by atomic scientists aiming to warn the world against a nuclear arms race would be drained of all impact due to revisions and retakes ordered by President Truman and the military—for reasons of propaganda, politics, and petty human vanity (this was Hollywood).

Mitchell has found his way into the lofty rooms, from Washington to California, where it happened, unearthing hundreds of letters and dozens of scripts that show how wise intentions were compromised in favor of defending the use of the bomb and the imperatives of postwar politics. As in his acclaimed Cold War true-life thriller The Tunnels, he exposes how our implacable American myth-making mechanisms distort our history.
Learn more about Greg Mitchell at his blog.

"Molten City"

New from Severn House: Molten City by Chris Nickson.

About the book, from the publisher:

Detective Superintendent Tom Harper senses trouble ahead when the prime minister plans a visit. Can he keep law and order on the streets while also uncovering the truth behind a missing child?

Leeds, September 1908
. There’s going to be a riot. Detective Superintendent Tom Harper can feel it. Herbert Asquith, the prime minster, is due to speak in the city. The suffragettes and the unemployed men will be out in the streets in protest. It’s Harper’s responsibility to keep order. Can he do it?

Harper has also received an anonymous letter claiming that a young boy called Andrew Sharp was stolen from his family fourteen years before. The file is worryingly thin. It ought to have been bulging. A missing child should have been headline news. Why was Andrew’s disappearance ignored?

Determined to uncover the truth about Andrew Sharp and bring the boy some justice, Harper is drawn deep into the dark underworld of child-snatching, corruption and murder as Leeds becomes a molten, rioting city.
Learn more about the book and author at Chris Nickson's website.

My Book, The Movie: The Constant Lovers.

The Page 69 Test: The Constant Lovers.

The Page 69 Test: The Iron Water.

The Page 69 Test: The Hanging Psalm.

Writers Read: Chris Nickson (January 2019).

--Marshal Zeringue

Thursday, June 25, 2020

"All the Broken People"

New from G.P. Putnam’s Sons: All the Broken People by Leah Konen.

About the book, from the publisher:

A woman in search of a fresh start is about to get more than she bargained for in this twisty and addictive domestic thriller for fans of The Couple Next Door.

Fleeing Brooklyn with little more than a suitcase and her trusty dog, Lucy King heads to rustic Woodstock , New York, eager to lose herself in a quiet life where her past can never find her. But when she meets Vera and John, the alluring couple next door, their friendship proves impossible to resist. Just as Lucy starts to think the worst is behind her, the couple delivers a staggering bombshell: they, too, need to escape their troubles–and the only way they can begin their new life is if Lucy helps them fake John’s death.

Afraid to lose her newfound support system, Lucy reluctantly conspires with them to stage an “accidental” death on a hike nearby. It’s just one little lie to the police, after all, and she knows a thing or two about the importance of fresh starts. But what begins as an elaborate ruse turns all too real when John turns up dead in the woods the morning after their hike. Now, Lucy must figure out who she can trust and who’s pulling the strings of her tenuous new life ... before she takes the fall for murder.
Visit Leah Konen's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

"The Truth Hurts"

Coming soon from Harper Perennial: The Truth Hurts: A Novel by Rebecca Reid.

About the book, from the publisher:

Is her new husband hiding something?

Caught up in a whirlwind romance that starts in sunny Ibiza and leads to the cool corridors of a luxurious English country estate, Poppy barely has time to catch her breath, let alone seriously question if all this is too good to be true. Drew is enamored, devoted, and, okay, a little mysterious—but that's part of the thrill. What's the harm in letting his past remain private?

Maybe he's not the only one…

Fortunately, Drew never seems to wonder why his young wife has so readily agreed to their unusual pact to live only in the here and now and not probe their personal histories. Perhaps he assumes, as others do, that she is simply swept up in the intoxication of infatuation and sudden wealth. What's the harm in letting them believe that?

How far will they go to keep the past buried?

Isolated in Drew's sprawling mansion, Poppy starts to have time to doubt the man she's married, to wonder what in his past might be so terrible that it can't be spoken of, to imagine what harm he might be capable of. She doesn't want this dream to shatter. But Poppy may soon be forced to confront the dark truth that there are sins far more dangerous than the sin of omission…
Follow Rebecca Reid on Twitter.

--Marshal Zeringue

Wednesday, June 24, 2020

"Race to the Bottom"

New from the University of Chicago Press: Race to the Bottom: How Racial Appeals Work in American Politics by LaFleur Stephens-Dougan.

About the book, from the publisher:

African American voters are a key demographic to the modern Democratic base, and conventional wisdom has it that there is political cost to racialized “dog whistles,” especially for Democratic candidates. However, politicians from both parties and from all racial backgrounds continually appeal to negative racial attitudes for political gain.

Challenging what we think we know about race and politics, LaFleur Stephens-Dougan argues that candidates across the racial and political spectrum engage in “racial distancing,” or using negative racial appeals to communicate to racially moderate and conservative whites—the overwhelming majority of whites—that they will not disrupt the racial status quo. Race to the Bottom closely examines empirical data on racialized partisan stereotypes to show that engaging in racial distancing through political platforms that do not address the needs of nonwhite communities and charged rhetoric that targets African Americans, immigrants, and others can be politically advantageous. Racialized communication persists as a well-worn campaign strategy because it has real electoral value for both white and black politicians seeking to broaden their coalitions. Stephens-Dougan reveals that claims of racial progress have been overstated as our politicians are incentivized to employ racial prejudices at the expense of the most marginalized in our society.
Visit LaFleur Stephens-Dougan's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

"True Love"

New from Harper: True Love by Sarah Gerard.

About the book, from the publisher:

One of today’s most provocative literary writers—the author of the critically acclaimed Sunshine State and the Los Angeles Times First Fiction Award finalist Binary Star—captures the confused state of modern romance and the egos that inflate it in a dark comedy about a woman's search for acceptance, identity, and financial security in the rise of Trump.

Nina is a struggling writer, a college drop-out, a liar, and a cheater. More than anything she wants love. She deserves it.

From the burned-out suburbs of Florida to the anonymous squalor of New York City, she eats through an incestuous cast of characters in search of it: her mother, a narcissistic lesbian living in a nudist polycule; Odessa, a single mom with even worse taste in men than Nina; Seth, an artist whose latest show is comprised of three Tupperware containers full of trash; Brian, whose roller-coaster affair with Nina is the most stable “relationship” in his life; and Aaron, an aspiring filmmaker living at home with his parents, with whom Nina begins to write her magnum opus.

Nina’s quest for fulfillment is at once darkly comedic, acerbically acute, and painfully human—a scathing critique of contemporary society, and a tender examination of our anguished yearning for connection in an era defined by detachment.
Visit Sarah Gerard's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

"Splash!: 10,000 Years of Swimming"

New from Hachette: Splash!: 10,000 Years of Swimming by Howard Means.

About the book, from the publisher:

Choose a stroke and get paddling through the human history of swimming!

From man’s first recorded dip into what’s now the driest spot on earth to the splashing, sparkling pool party in your backyard, humans have been getting wet for 10,000 years. And for most of modern history, swimming has caused a ripple that touches us all–the heroes and the ordinary folk; the real and the mythic.

Splash! dives into Egypt, winds through ancient Greece and Rome, flows mostly underground through the Dark and Middle Ages (at least in Europe), and then reemerges in the wake of the Renaissance before taking its final lap at today’s Olympic games. Along the way, it kicks away the idea that swimming is just about moving through water, about speed or great feats of aquatic endurance, and shows you how much more it can be. Its history offers a multi-tiered tour through religion, fashion, architecture, sanitation and public health, colonialism, segregation and integration, sexism, sexiness, guts, glory, and much, much more.

Unique and compelling, Splash! sweeps across the whole of humankind’s swimming history–and just like jumping into a pool on a hot summer’s day, it has fun along the way.
Learn more about the book and author at Howard Means's website.

The Page 99 Test: Johnny Appleseed.

My Book, The Movie: 67 Shots.

Writers Read: Howard Means (April 2016).

The Page 99 Test: 67 Shots.

--Marshal Zeringue