21 Thrillers | Fiction Previews, Mar. 2017, Pt. 3


Abbott, Jeff. Blame. Grand Central. Mar. 2017. 400p. ISBN 9781455558438. $26; ebk. ISBN 9781455558452. lib. ebk. ISBN 9781455595662. Downloadable: Hachette Audio. THRILLER Another Sam Capra thriller from this three-time Edgar nominee? Actually not. Abbott has decided to take a break and write a stand-alone psychological suspense novel, for which there are no plot details but […]

Ancient Egypt, Chinese Aspirations, & More | History Previews, Mar. 2017, Pt. 3


Ellsberg, Daniel. The Doomsday Machine: Confessions of a Nuclear War Planner. Bloomsbury. Mar. 2017. 384p. ISBN 9781608196708. $30. POLITICAL SCIENCE In 1961, when Ellsberg served as a consultant to the Department of Defense and the White House, he helped draft Secretary Robert McNamara’s plans for nuclear war. Then he leaked the Pentagon Papers, and the […]

National Book Foundation Honors Robert A. Caro


The National Book Foundation today announced that it is awarding the Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters to Robert A. Caro, the celebrated author of The Power Broker: Robert Moses and the Fall of New York and the multivolume biography The Years of Lyndon Johnson. He is the 29th recipient of the medal, created […]

National Book Foundation Recognizes African American Poetry Organization Cave Canem


The National Book Foundation today announced that this year’s Literarian Award for Outstanding Service to the American Literary Community will be presented to Cave Canem, an organization that supports African American poetry. In its 12th year, the award has been presented to distinguished individuals from Dr. Maya Angelou and Dave Eggers to Terry Gross and […]

National Book Awards Long Lists


Long lists have the advantage of maximizing excitement not only about the award in question but about books generally, offering a wider range of good titles that are sometimes surprising and other times suddenly obvious. The long lists for the National Book Awards, rolled out last week over four days, are no exception. The nonfiction […]

Four Rising-Star Novelists | Barbara’s Picks, Mar. 2017, Pt. 2


Butler, Nickolas. The Hearts of Men. Ecco. Mar. 2017. 400p. ISBN 9780062469687. $26.99; ebk. ISBN 9780062469700. LITERARY Butler, who debuted with the heartfelt Shotgun Lovesongs, which won honors ranging from the Midwest Booksellers Choice Award to France’s Prix Page/America, returns after the story collection Beneath the Bonfire with another look at male bonding. At Camp […]

Worldwide Mystery | Fiction Previews, Mar. 2017, Pt. 2


Andrew, Sally. The Satanic Mechanic: A Tannie Maria Mystery. Ecco. Mar. 2017. 320p. ISBN 9780062397690. $26.99. MYSTERY Having triumphed with Recipes for Love and Murder, which was listed by O, The Oprah Magazine among “16 Books To Start 2016 Right,” this second mystery features recipe writer Tannie Maria, now an amateur sleuth. When the nature […]

Plague and Mutation | Medical Books Previews, Mar. 2017, Pt. 2


Hatch, Steven, M.D. Inferno: A Doctor’s Ebola Story. St. Martin’s. Mar. 2017. 320p. ISBN 9781250085139. $27.99; ebk. ISBN 9781250085146. MEMOIR/MEDICAL An assistant professor of medicine at the University of Massachusetts Medical School, specializing in infectious disease and immunology, Hatch traveled to Liberia in 2013 to work at a hospital there. Six months later, several of […]

National Book Awards Fiction Long List Announced

Wrapping up the announcement of its four long lists for the National Book Awards, begun with young people’s literature, poetry, and nonfiction, the National Book Foundation today announced its fiction long list. (See also “National Book Award Poetry Long List Announced” and “National Book Award Nonfiction Long List Announced”). The books chosen focus tightly on […]

National Book Award Nonfiction Long List Announced

Continuing the rollout of its four long lists for the National Book Awards, the National Book Foundation today announced its nonfiction long list. (See also “National Book Award Poetry Long List Announced.”) The list is strongly focused on America history and politics, ranging from Andrew J. Bacevich’s America’s War for the Greater Middle East: A […]