Queen Victoria, Pixar, Space Travel, & More | Nonfiction Previews, Nov. 2016, Pt. 4

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Alvarez, Walter. A Most Improbable Journey: A Big History of Our Planet and Ourselves. Norton. Nov. 2016. 288p. ISBN 9780393292695. $26.95. SCIENCE/COSMOLOGY If you’re familiar with the “Impact Theory,” which blames dinosaur extinction on a crash-landed asteroid, then you’re familiar with Berkeley geologist Alvarez; he originated the idea. Here he argues that Big History, which […]

James Patterson’s New BookShots Line

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Short fiction can be a tough sell these days, which is surprising in our lightning-fast times when a quick read should appeal. And, alas, some people have stopped reading altogether in favor of various device-driven entertainments. Mega-best-selling author Patterson aims to buck those trends with his new BookShots line, which offers brief, reasonably priced books […]

Benjamin Black, Elena Ferrante, Pulitzer Prize Winner Lowery, George Mitchell | Barbara’s Picks, Nov. 2016, Pt. 3

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Black, Benjamin. Golden Lane. Holt. Nov. 2016. 320p. ISBN 9781627795173. $28; ebk. ISBN 9781627795180. CD: Macmillan Audio. MYSTERY/HISTORICAL John Banville writes impeccable literary works like the Man Booker Prize–winning The Sea, while as Benjamin Black he writes impeccable crime novels starring Dublin-based pathologist Quirke. Here he assumes his Black persona but travels back to 1599 […]

Baldacci, Child, Cornwell, Maitland, & More | Chiller Previews, Nov. 2016, Pt. 3

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Baldacci, David. No Man’s Land. Grand Central. Nov. 2016. 432p. ISBN 9781455586516. $29; ebk. ISBN 9781455586493. lib. ebk. ISBN 9781455586523. CD/downloadable: Hachette Audio. THRILLER In his fourth outing (after The Escape), military investigator John Puller must revisit his mother’s disappearance 30 years ago for the worst of reasons. Someone has alleged that his father, now […]

Megyn Kelly, Trevor Noah, Chait on Obama, & More | Current Interest Previews, Nov. 2016, Pt. 3

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Chait, Jonathan. The Long Game: The Greatness of the Obama Presidency. Custom House: HarperCollins. Nov. 2016. 256p. ISBN 9780062426970. $27.99; ebk. ISBN 9780062426994. POLITICAL SCIENCE Author of New York magazine’s “The National Interest” column, which is read by 1.8 million readers weekly, Chait cites President Obama’s record on major policy fronts, from economics to health […]

The 2016 BEA Galley & Signing Guide Is Ready

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BookExpo is here, and so is the BEA Galley & Signing Guide. This year, the show floor is more structured than ever, with many publishers having strict schedules for giveaways and signings. Though the times can shift some, windows of opportunity are narrow and giveaways available only as supplies last, so planning a battle strategy […]

P.D. James, Javier Marias, the Gelbs on O’Neill, & Pulitzer Prize Winner Wood | Barbara’s Picks, Nov. 2016, Pt. 2

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Gelb, Arthur & Barbara Gelb. By Women Possessed: A Life of Eugene O’Neill. Marian Wood: Putnam. Nov. 2016. 896p. ISBN 9780399159114. $50; ebk. ISBN 9780698170681. LITERATURE The Gelbs are already the authors of O’Neill (1962) and O’Neill: Life with Monte Cristo (2000), so they were building on a solid base when they crafted this final […]

Last of the Christmas Novels 2016 | Fiction Previews, Nov. 2016, Pt. 2

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Dickens, Charles. A Christmas Carol: The Original Manuscript Edition. Norton. Nov. 2016. 160p. ISBN 9780393608649. $21.95. FICTION/CLASSICS Each holiday season, Manhattan’s famed Morgan Library & Museum displays one of its most important documents: the original manuscript of Charles Dickens’s A Christmas Carol, with corrections, deletions, and insertions all in Dickens’s own hand. Since I can […]

BEA Prep | Day of Dialog, the Galley Guide, & More

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Books to buy, books to recommend, trends to follow, programs to plan, and a better understanding of the state of publishing today: these are the annual takeaways from LJ’s Day of Dialog, held in conjunction with BookExpo America and going strong for nearly two decades. I’ve been there every year, and the range and quality […]

Michael Chabon, Alice Hoffman, Zadie Smith, John Edgar Wideman | Barbara’s Picks, Nov. 2016, Pt. 1

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Chabon, Michael. Moonglow. Harper. Nov. 2016. 432p. ISBN 9780062225559. $28.99; ebk. ISBN 9780062225573. CD: HarperAudio. lrg. prnt. LITERARY FICTION Framed as a man’s deathbed confession to his grandson, capturing the seesawing intensity of the American century, ranging from South Philadelphia’s Jewish slums and the invasion of Germany to New York’s Wallkill Prison and a Florida […]